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King County Council will consider prohibiting use of facial recognition technology

The ordinance would also prohibit district offices from entering into agreements with third parties or receiving information about facial recognition.

KING COUNTY, Washington – Editor’s note: The above video was previously broadcast on KING 5 in May 2021.

King County Council will consider banning the purchase and use of facial recognition technology by administrative offices, including the sheriff’s office.

The Regulation proposal, which will be discussed during Tuesday’s council meeting, would also prohibit the county’s administrative and executive departments from receiving facial recognition information or entering into an agreement authorizing a third party to use the technology.

A spokesman for the King County Sheriff’s Office said beforehand they do not use face recognition technology and support the action.

A long list of nonprofits, including the ACLU, sent a letter to the council asking them to pass the ban.

The proposed ban would only affect King County’s offices, not cities within the county.

The Seattle Police Department doesn’t use facial recognition tools, a spokesman previously told KING 5.

Of the technology concerns, the most important are accuracy, demographic biases, and encroachments on civil liberties.

“Technology is moving fast and it can be improved, but do we still want to be monitored on this scale? [the] Government? “Councilor Jeanne Kohl-Welles, the sponsor the bill that would ban the tools, it was said at the beginning of May.