Microsoft declines to sell facial recognition tech to police: Washington Post

FILE PHOTO: The Microsoft logo is pictured ahead of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain February 24, 2019. REUTERS/Sergio Perez

(Reuters) – Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) will not sell its facial-recognition technology to police departments until there is a federal law regulating the tech, the Washington Post reported on Thursday, citing the software maker’s president, Brad Smith.

The news here comes a day after Inc (AMZN.O) said it was implementing a one-year moratorium on police use of its facial-recognition software, halting a business it long defended as many protested law enforcement brutality against people of color.

The death of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody last month, has fanned worries that facial recognition would be used unfairly against protesters.

“When even the makers of face recognition refuse to sell this surveillance technology because it is so dangerous, lawmakers can no longer deny the threats to our rights and liberties,” said Matt Cagle, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union.

Reporting by Munsif Vengattil, Stephen Nellis and Jeffrey Dastin; Editing by Shinjini Ganguli

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