IBM stops offering facial recognition software

Technology major IBM has stopped offering general purpose facial recognition or analysis software.
The US-based company will stop offering facial recognition software and oppose any use of such technology for purposes of mass surveillance and racial profiling, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna said in a letter to the members of the United States Congress.

The tech giant’s decision to get out of the facial recognition business, employed by multiple companies, comes as the United States grapples with nationwide protests over the death of a black man, George Floyd, under police custody in Minneapolis.

“IBM opposes and will not condone uses of any technology, including facial recognition technology offered by other vendors, for mass surveillance, racial profiling, violations of basic human rights and freedoms, or any purpose which is not consistent with our values and Principles of Trust and Transparency,” he was quoted as saying in the letter.

Government officials across the country have proposed reforms to address police brutality and racial injustice aimed at boosting oversight of law enforcement agencies.

Arvind Krishna, the key architect of IBM’s $34 billion Red Hat acquisition last year, took over the chief executive officer role from Ginni Rometty in April.

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