China drafts rules for using facial recognition technology | World News - Hindustan Times
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China drafts rules for using facial recognition technology

Reuters | | Posted by Nisha Anand
Aug 08, 2023 06:57 AM IST

The draft rules come amid Beijing's effort to tighten data regulation by issuing an array of rules and laws.

China's cyberspace regulator said on Tuesday it has issued draft rules to oversee the security management of facial recognition technology in the country.

A facial recognition display at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai, China.(Bloomberg)
A facial recognition display at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai, China.(Bloomberg)

The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) said facial recognition technology can only be used to process facial information when there is a specific purpose and sufficient necessity, and with strict protective measures.

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The use of the technology will also require individual's consent, the CAC said in a statement. It added that non-biometric identification solutions should be favored over facial recognition in cases where such methods are equally effective.

Biometric identification, especially facial recognition, has become widespread in China, being used for everything from rubbish collection to toilet roll dispensers, a trend that has triggered both public and regulatory concerns.

Many Chinese courts and local governments have ruled against and fined companies for facial recognition overuse in recent years, according to the South China Morning Post.

The draft rules also come amid Beijing's effort to tighten data regulation by issuing an array of rules and laws. Most notably, China introduced its first law focusing on user privacy, the Personal Information Protection Law, in 2021 in a bid to rein in companies' overuse of user data.

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