Facebook face recognition feature rolling out: How it works

Facebook face recognition feature rolling out: How it works

Starting today, the company will no longer scan new users' faces by default to do things like identify them in photos.

Almost two years ago, Facebook introduced a face recognition feature that went beyond suggesting friends to tag in pictures or videos but could let user know when they were in images they had permission to see elsewhere on the service.

You can check your settings by selecting "face recognition" under your Facebook privacy settings, or via this link. The feature was first introduced in 2017, but not everyone got it at the time. Today, a Facebook representative by the name of Srinivas Narayanan, Applied Research Lead, Facebook AI said that Facebook has "only used face recognition technology to automatically suggest tags for your friends in photos".

The changes are now in effect all over the world, and some users with specific settings will start seeing prompts to decide in to face acknowledgment beginning today. The new facial recognition will also help users to protect themselves from identity theft and impersonation. The social network must "provide clear and conspicuous notice of its use of facial recognition technology", the FTC said.

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"If you do not now have the face recognition setting and do nothing, we will not use face recognition to recognize you or suggest tags", it said. A spokesperson told Fast Company, "In the U.S. and [other countries] where Tag Suggestions was available, we respected people's Tag Suggestions settings choice". This feature was turned on by default unless you chose to opt out of it.

People who still have the tag suggestions setting will receive an alert about the feature and how Facebook will use facial recognition, along with a button to turn it on or off, said the company. Subsequently, the users who don't see the notice or ignore the provided options will have the feature turned "off" by default until they decide to modify their preferences through the settings menu. Click Face Recognition, and on the right (in Face Recognition Settings), tap "Edit".

In the app, tap the stack of three bars in the upper right-hand corner, scroll through the list and tap Settings. This earlier setting notified you if someone uploaded a photo and automatically tagged you in it.

Above you'll see step-by-step guides for these two platforms.

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