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Portland, Oregon Imposes Strict Ban on Use of Facial Recognition Technology in Public and Private Sectors

Publications / Sep 30, 2020

Article written by Haim Ravia and Dotan Hammer

In the wake of concerns for inequities and disparities against minorities in the use of facial recognition technologies, the city of Portland in the State of Oregon passed two municipal ordinances banning the use of face recognition technologies.

The first ordinance, effective immediately, bans the use of face recognition technology by all city agencies and offices. The second ordinance, effective January 1, 2021, and unprecedented in the United States, bans facial recognition technology in places of public accommodation by private entities within the city’s boundaries. Violations of the ordinance banning private-sector use are subject to compensatory damages of up to $1,000 per day per injured individual, plus attorney fees.

Both ordinances include several exceptions to the ban, in case the use of facial recognition technology is necessary to comply with the law, to access a personal or employer-issued electronic device, or in social media services.

Both bans will remain in effect until Portland adopts or revises a comprehensive data protection framework that addresses the appropriate use or prohibition of face recognition technologies and the information derived from them.

CLICK HERE to read Portland’s ordinance banning the use of facial recognition technology by city agencies.

CLICK HERE to read Portland’s ordinance banning the use of facial recognition technology by private entities.

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