FILE - In this Oct. 31, 2018, file photo, a man, who declined to be identified, has his face painted to represent efforts to defeat facial recognition during a protest at Amazon headquarters over the company's facial recognition system, "Rekognition," in Seattle. San Francisco is on track to become the first U.S. city to ban the use of facial recognition by police and other city agencies as the technology creeps increasingly into daily life. Studies have shown error rates in facial-analysis systems built by Amazon, IBM and Microsoft were far higher for darker-skinned women than lighter-skinned men. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

San Francisco may ban police, city use of facial recognition

May 13, 2019 - 1:00 am

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — San Francisco is on track to become the first U.S. city to ban the use of facial recognition by police and other city agencies as the technology creeps increasingly into daily life.

The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is scheduled to vote Tuesday on broad surveillance legislation that includes the ban.

Facial recognition technology is not new and has been used to run headshots through databases in search of suspects and to prevent identity fraud.

But recent advances in artificial intelligence have created more sophisticated computer vision tools that make it easier for police to pinpoint a missing child or a protester in a crowd.

Supporters of a ban say the technology poses a severe threat to civil rights. Opponents of a ban say police need tools to catch criminals.