Facial Recognition: A Pathway or a Threat to our Future?

Facial recognition technology is no longer the stuff of science fiction. It is a part of our daily lives, used to unlock our smartphones or to automatically organize our online photo albums.

But it’s not just being used to make our lives more convenient. Security and law enforcement have shown interest in the technology to find missing persons, to track suspects and to support investigations. Airports, stadiums and banks are all seeing the possible applications of facial recognition technology.

But many are not so thrilled at the quick adoption of this new tech. Is it sufficiently regulated? Does it impeach on our right to privacy? Is it as unbiased as it claims to be? Can it be safely used or should it be banned completely?

We co-sponsored a panel on the topic with experts to try and sort out fact from fiction and explain why this issue is important to all of us on Wednesday, Feb. 5. Meet our panel of experts who were joined online by Bernie Lucht (Executive Producer of CBC Radio's Ideas from 1984-2012; Senior Fellow, Massey College, University of Toronto) for the conversation.

  • Tamir Israel, Staff Lawyer, Samuelson-Glushko Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic
  • Brenda McPhail, Director, Privacy, Technology & Surveillance Project, Canadian Civil Liberties Association
  • Jacob Schroeder, Legal Counsel, Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada

Special thanks to our co-sponsors: Canadian Civil Liberties Association, Edmonton Public Library, Toronto Public Library and Vancouver Public Library.

Check out our website to view and register for some of our upcoming events.

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