Facebook expands its use of facial recognition technology

Getty Images for CNN

Getty Images for CNN

Facebook is introducing new facial recognition features that will automatically notify users when their photo is posted on the social network.

The new feature, which Facebook frames as a control measure for a user's image, is one of three new applications of facial recognition technology the company announced Tuesday. The alerts make it easier for users to tag themselves if they like the photo, but they also allow users to contact the uploader of the photo if they have a problem with it. Facebook said the new feature can also protect users from online impersonators by spotting people who are attempting to use the same profile picture. Since profile photos are public, you should always get a notification about this.

As optimistic as Facebook is about the new use case for its facial recognition technology, it also recognizes that this is not something that everyone is going to want to participate in. Google has upped its interest in facial recognition as well, and also introduced features into its photo service that group photos by person.

You will only be notify if the post was shared with you. When photos and videos are uploaded to Facebook, they are compared to images in the template to determine if there is a match.

Since 2015, Facebook has been fighting Illinois' law, but this year, at least five other states are looking to add similar facial recognition and biometrics laws to the books.

If you don't want Facebook to recognize your face, though, you'll soon be able to disable the site's ability to refer to your profile photos and videos for identification purposes. The post is titled: " Hard Questions: Should I Be Afraid of Face Recognition Technology? .

"We're doing this to prevent people from impersonating others on Facebook", he said. "We listen carefully to feedback from people who use Facebook, as well as from experts in the field", Sherman wrote.

While this may not seem like that big of a deal, Facebook's own data suggests they are the largest repository of facial recognition in the world.

Naturally there are fun reasons for a feature like this, such as when someone posts of a photo from a family outing you may have attended, allowing you to keep a photo you may not have seen otherwise.

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