The owner of PimEyes insists on the "ethical use" of the search site for facial recognition |  Biometric updates

The owner of PimEyes insists on the “ethical use” of the search site for facial recognition | Biometric updates

Giorgi Gobronidze, owner of PimEyes, a face-finding site that uses artificial intelligence-based facial recognition to search for images of people on the site, says users of the site should be more ethical in the way they search for photos.

According to Gobronidze, “ethical use” of photo search sites means that users only have to search for their own faces or the faces of those who have consented to such searches, according to The New York Times (subscription required).

PimEyes has become quite popular as a face recognition search engine that helps people find their photos that have been published online in seconds. The site captures results from blogs, newspaper articles, wedding photo galleries, review sites, or pornographic sites, but not from social media sites.

PimEyes, which has changed management since its inception in 2017, is now embroiled in controversy over how photos are searched on the web. This is because there are allegedly no specific or strong control mechanisms in place by the company to regulate the photo retrieval process.

The article cites the example of Cher Scarlett, a computer engineer who had a bitter experience a few months ago after finding photos of her being harassed from the Scarlett sexual commercial exploitation incident years ago.

A search on PimEyes yielded photos, and Scarlett said she had no idea they could be anywhere on the Internet.

He says that as part of trying to find a way to get these photos from the Internet, she had to subscribe to PimEyes ‘PROtect Plans’, where users can get unwanted photos downloaded from external links with help from the PimEyes help desk. That didn’t solve her problem either, because the photos continued to appear in the next search. In addition, it costs $ 90 to $ 300 a month, leading Scarlett to label “blackmail.”

However, Gobronidze told The Times that the site was created with additional tools that could allow users to keep their photos from appearing in a photo search index on the web. He mentions a free tool that can be used to remove search results from the PimEyes index, as well as an “opt-out” feature that allows you to remove data from the web, including search results for facial images you want to download. .

Scarlett eventually used the ‘opt-out’ feature and received an email from PimEyes in April stating: “Your potential results containing your face are being removed from our system.”

Despite this, the Times reveals that it tried to search Scarlett’s face weeks later and found about 100 search results with her photos, including some of the porn auditions.

In response, Gobronidze claims that the “opt-out” option does not prevent someone’s face from being searched, but rather blocks photos with a high degree of similarity from the PimEyes search index. For this reason, in an opt-out blog post, the company encourages those who use it to submit “multiple opt-out requests with different photos.”

The company says more protections are under development, but it will take a while.

In the meantime, biometrics experts say they believe PimEyes must do more than it currently does to promote the ethical use of a facial recognition website, presumably by requiring search engines to identify themselves with either state-issued IDs. , or through biometrics.

In an e-mail response to the Biometric Update on the subject, John Gunn, CEO of Token, a provider of biometric identification technology, wrote: . They could simply require users to present their driver’s license, passport, or other photo ID, verify with a digital identity provider such as Mitek or Jumio, and then use their own technology to restrict the search. “

Gunn, whose expertise also includes wearable innovations and experience in digital identity, fraud prevention, and identity and access management, added: “If banks can borrow thousands of dollars just for photo ID, PimEyes can easily accept this cheap technology. Their current approach requires government intervention and regulation. “

PimEyes this month announced the launch of an affiliate program to raise awareness of its facial recognition service.

This post was updated at 9:25 a.m. Eastern Time on June 2, 2022 to emphasize that the pornographic images were being misused without consent.

Article topics

biometric identification biometrics commercial applications facial biometrics face pictures | facial recognition PimEyes | privacy Chip

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