Meta is sued over facial recognition

Meta, the company that owns Facebook, Instagram and many other social media platforms, is one of the most popular technological corporations.

Aiming to create a more technology-centered world, Meta’s race to advance technological possibilities is ongoing.

However, as technology progresses faster than we have ever seen, privacy concerns begin
to arise.

Currently, the state of Texas is filing a billion-dollar lawsuit against Meta for the misuse of facial recognition data. The lawsuit alleges that Meta is collecting facial recognition data without consent.

Mark Kim, assistant professor of computing, software and data sciences, said he believes Meta might be using facial recognition data.

“Companies want your data mainly for advertisement purposes,” Kim said. “In order for people to receive personalized, extremely good customer service, companies need data on the customer. So there is an exchange of service there. You get good customer service, and they get your data. However, there is a questionability when it comes to how the company gets
the data.”

Companies can use different strategies to get your data,
Kim said.

“Facial recognition is a strategy and can be used as a surveillance tracker, tracking what you look at and for how long,”
Kim said. “You might agree to facial recognition because it is an easier way to unlock your phone without needing a password but don’t realize that data is also being used elsewhere. Facial recognition essentially builds a graph of your facial features. It requires several pictures in order to improve the accuracy. This graph is
stored and kept in record to be used for anything it can be used for.”

Eileen Solorzano, freshman photography and graphic design double major, warned about what companies might do with your information.

“Anytime you put your information online or on your device, you essentially give it away,” Solorzano said. “The internet and tech companies are powerful and they know how to use your information to their advantage. ”

Masha Sowell, sophomore psychology major, said she thinks the improved technology such as facial recognition does not necessarily help us in terms of safety.

“These technological advancements are being made so that it is easier for us to
access things but harder for other people, but this isn’t true,” Sowell said. “Technology will always have flaws, and all it does is create a way for companies to get more information out of us.”

Technological concerns over newfound issues are common in fast-paced environments.

“This technology is a lot in a short amount of time,” Kim said. “It’s coming out so fast that it is easy to let things slip by. Meta is getting sued right now as a result.”

As technology continues to evolve, make sure to be mindful of your technology practices by doing things such as fully reading agreements, only adding contacts you know and being careful about what personal information you choose to upload onto the internet.

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