The FTC Forced a Misbehaving A.I. Company to Delete Its Algorithm

Dave Gershgorn


Jan 19, 2021

In 2019, an investigation by NBC News revealed that the photo storage app Ever had used billions of its users' photos to train facial recognition algorithms without their permission. Ever then sold those algorithms to law enforcement agencies and the U.S. military who wanted the technology to improve their own facial recognition technology. This week, the Federal Trade Commission decision is forcing Paravision, the parent company of Ever, to not only delete the photos Ever had stolen from its users, but to delete the algorithms as well. This ruling sets a precedent in battles over artificial intelligence. The decision is a costly one, too, since deleting the algorithms means that Ever can't make good on its contracts with law enforcement agencies and the military. Chalk this one up to a win for enforcing privacy regulations in AI.

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