Clearview AI now lets Canadians opt-out of facial recognition searches

Unfortunately, to opt-out, you need to upload a photo of yourself

Clearview AI website

On the heels of Clearview AI announcing plans to pull out of Canada, residents can now request they not appear in the facial recognition system.

As reported by CBC News, sometime this week, Clearview AI added a link to its website. Canadians who click the link can “opt-out” of the company’s facial recognition search.

Clearview uses artificial intelligence and machine learning technology to scrape people’s images from the internet and then matches people to that database using facial recognition. It does not seek consent from people before harvesting their photos.

Clearview AI intended its software for use by law enforcement agencies, but it’s also available to private companies.

Unfortunately for Canadians who want to remove themselves from Clearview’s facial recognition search results, there is a catch. Clearview AI requests that anyone who wants to opt-out submit a photo of themselves.

Although some may be wary of handing over more data to the facial recognition company, Clearview’s website explains that it cannot search by name.

“To find any Clearview search results that pertain to you (if any), we cannot search by name or any method other than image — so we need an image of you,” it says on the website.

Further, Clearview says the supplied photo won’t appear in search results. It will also be “de-identified.”

“Deidentification means that Clearview AI retains only a numerical hash of a photo for the sole purpose of removing persons in that photo from search results and preventing further collection,” Clearview AI CEO Hoan Ton-That told CBC News in an email.

Additionally, Clearview will maintain a record of opt-out requests. It also asks for a person’s email to send a confirmation when it completes the opt-out request.

CBC News says that Ton-That hasn’t clarified if Clearview plans to keep data belonging to and photos of Canadians on file even though it will no longer operate in the country. 

Source: CBC News