Privacy Protection has been far too long to wait

Source: The post is based on the article Privacy Protection has been far too long to wait published in The Live Mint on 29th August 2022.

Syllabus: GS 2 – Fundamental Rights

Relevance: Privacy and issues associated with it

News: This article discusses the issues associated with the facial recognition system and the efforts taken by the Supreme Court to address privacy issues.

The Internet Freedom Foundation filed a series of Right To Information (RTI) appeals to ask for details on facial recognition technology being used in our public spaces.

The reply to RTI shows that 124 such systems are currently in use across India. Many such closed-circuit cameras are deployed at airports, railway stations, and public thoroughfares.

What are the issues with Facial Recognition Technology and similar systems?

This facial recognition is being done in the absence of data protection laws.

The consent of citizens is also not taken before using this system.

All around the world, there is discomfort over the use of facial recognition system because it is unreliable and there is a threat of misuse of this system.

Some cities in the US have banned its use, and there are similar demands in the EU.

It is against the SC ruling in the Puttaswamy case, which upheld the right to privacy as a fundamental right.

What are the other similar concerns?

A recent circular issued by the Unique Identification Authority of India has created confusion among the public. The circular recommended citizens to not give out photocopies of Aadhar cards.

SC panel report on the use of Pegasus spyware by the Government was kept private and remained inconclusive. There was also a lack of clarity over allegations of military-grade spyware used against Indian journalists, politicians, judges, etc.

The lawmakers in India are letting people as well Constitution down by not putting invasive surveillance tech to the test of our right to privacy.

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