Washington's Microsoft bans police face recognition sales; big techs react to protest

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Washington's Microsoft bans police face recognition sales; big techs react to protest

Microsoft Corp., the Redmond, Washington-based American multinational technology company that had quietly swayed away from its traditional operating system business back in the 2014s and focused more on to its cloud platform, Microsoft Azure, under leadership of Chief Executive Satya Nadella, had issued a statement on Thursday saying that the Silicon Valley software manufacturer would await for Federal Regulation before handing over its facial recognition software to the US Police Department, marking up the latest big tech company to back off from the surveillance business in context of nationwide protests against Police brutality.

In point of fact, the Microsoft announcement was brought into light a day after its arch-rival Amazon.com Inc. had stalled police use of its “Rekognition” software for a year, while the IBM (International Business Machines Corp.) had also told that the American tech tycoon would no longer offer its software and technologies that could be used to support racial injustice.

Microsoft to pause sales of facial recognition software until a strong ground forged over human rights

Aside from that, in a statement, the Washington-based American multinational tech conglomerate said on Thursday, “We do not sell our facial recognition technology to U.S.

police departments today, and until there is a strong national law grounded in human rights, we will not sell this technology to police,” a Washington Post report had revealed earlier on the day. On top of that, researchers said that the facial recognition software were often less accurate to identify black people, which had added to further protestors’ concerns that a mass-scale use of the software could lead to false matches and unjust arrests.

Meanwhile, adding that the facial recognition software could threaten the American citizens’ rights and liberties, an Attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of Norther California, Matt Cagle said shortly after the Microsoft announcement, “When even the makers of face recognition refuse to sell this surveillance technology because it is so dangerous, lawmakers can no longer deny the threats to our rights and liberties.