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Italy prohibits facial recognition technology, except to combat crime

On Monday, Italy forbade the use of ‘smart glasses’ and facial recognition after its Data Protection Agency chastised two municipalities for testing the devices.


According to the privacy watchdog, facial recognition systems employing biometric data won’t be permitted until a special law is passed or at least until the end of next year.


The only exception is when these technologies are used in legal proceedings or to combat crime.


According to the agency, the moratorium is necessary to control the eligibility requirements, circumstances, and guarantees linked to facial recognition in accordance with the principle of proportionality.


The processing of personal data by public entities using video devices is typically permitted under European Union and Italian law on the basis of public interest and when connected to the function of public authorities, it was said.


Municipalities who wish to deploy them must, however, negotiate ‘urban security pacts’ with central government officials.


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