Apple’s Use of Face Recognition in the New iPhone: Implications

from ACLU

Apple unveiled its new iPhone X Tuesday, and it will include extensive face recognition capabilities. Face recognition (as I have discussed) is one of the more dangerous biometrics from a privacy standpoint, because it can be leveraged for mass tracking across society. But Apple has a proven record of achieving widespread acceptance for technologies that it incorporates into its phones. So what are we to think of this new deployment?

The first question is whether the technology will be successful. Face and iris recognition technology incorporated into some other phones (such as Samsung’s) has widely been seen as insecure and/or impractical. In recent years Apple has acquired several face recognition companies, and the company claims the new phones’ capabilities will include the ability to measure 30,000 infrared, three-dimensional points on a user’s face, the ability to distinguish a real face from photographs and masks, and extremely low false-positive and false-negative rates. But only time will tell if people find the face recognition functionality on this and other phones to be practical enough for widespread adoption.

Even if it is successful, some of the first-order privacy implications of Apple’s new deployment can be overblown?—?mainly, the collection of user face data through the iPhone unlocking function. First, Apple has said that the face recognition data will be stored locally on users’ phones, and not transmitted to a central database. Second, for the time being there are far bigger, more comprehensive collections of individuals’ photographs, including the state DMV databases, and photo databases maintained by the State Department and Customs and Border Protection, not to mention Facebook and Google, which store billions of photographs. For mass-surveillance purposes, those photographs would probably serve just as well as Apple’s 3-D face maps.

Of course, whatever promises Apple makes today could be rolled back in the future, not to mention ignored by other companies if the technology becomes standard. Our big worry is that face recognition will be used to identify and tag people in new, privacy-invasive contexts, leading ultimately perhaps to a pervasive system of identification that tracks Americans in their every movement. Face recognition from mobile phone unlocking could certainly in the future become a key part of such a surveillance infrastructure.

Still, at the end of the day, while storage of face templates for phone unlocking is what worries many people up front, that is not an immediate threat.

More here.

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29 Responses to Apple’s Use of Face Recognition in the New iPhone: Implications

  1. Nicholas Birchby September 22, 2017 at 1:06 pm #

    Apple has been dominating the cell phone business ever since their original launch of the iPhone. Now, we have just been released the iPhone X, and Apple is continuing to revolutionize technology. The iPhone X will be the first iPhone to have facial recognition technology. This means when you pick up your iPhone and look at it, the phone will recognize your face as the owner and unlock it. So far, reports have shown the face recognition has had extremely high success rates. However, there are many concerns regarding the facial recognition being implemented by Apple. Many people are concerned that their privacy may be at risk or that they can be tracked by Apple because of this new feature. To counter this, Apple has stated that all data involving facial recognition will be stored on the user’s iPhone, and will not be sent to any sort of database. This is important for Apple because it protects themselves and their customers. They avoid any possibility of being hacked, and the user is happy knowing that their information and personal life is safe. Apple claims that by keeping all face recognition data in the phones hard drive that the data is completely safe. Although experts are saying it is only a matter of how long before people begin to figure out how to break down the protection, and find peoples information. It is a balance of convenience and security, we are trading an extra two seconds for less secure phones perhaps. There is also debate over whether or not face recognition data will be used in law enforcement. There is no law involving face recognition under any warrants, so the true use of this technology is still very much in question. If police are able to access your cell phone and access private information, I believe the public will be outraged at Apple and will completely turn on the entire idea of face recognition in cell phones. The 5th amendment is important also, giving you the right to not self-incriminate. Although it is likely that facial recognition will be viewed equal to the fingerprint unlock, in which case law enforcement would be able to use it upon reasonable clause to search your cell phone. Apple has been successful in keeping their user’s information private for a long time. Another point Apple brings up about safety, is there are already several public logs filled with photographs. Facebook, Instagram, the DMV, Border Protection, and Google, ALL hold millions of pictures of people. This is a good point to me because many of those options are much easier ways to find out information about people and see what they look like. Especially since people are willing to post just about anything on social media these days. Possibly the biggest flaw in the facial recognition technology is that many people are reporting that it does not work as well with dark skinned people. Apple cannot have this happen because it will cause a divide in their customers. Dark skinned people are not going to want to purchase a cell phone that has reports of not working as well for them. This is a very bad look for Apple if it turns out to be true. In my opinion, if there was even a small difference in the success rates between different color skins, you would have to wipe out the whole idea of the facial recognition. A problem involving race is not a problem a major company like Apple wants to have, they absolutely need to solve this.

    • Danielle Gangemi October 2, 2017 at 6:29 pm #

      As technology advances at a fast rate, Apple jumps at the opportunity to enhance their products to stay up to date. Apple’s new iPhone X features facial recognition technology that allows the consumer to unlock their phone more efficiently. Face recognition has many pros and cons. It is very dangerous from a privacy standpoint and many are questioning whether or not it will be successful. Over the years, Apple has claimed that their new iPhone feature will be able to measure many aspects of the users face and will be able to tell the difference between a real face from photographs or masks. Apple says that the information from the facial recognition will only be stored on the users local phone and not transmitted to the central database. The biggest concern is that users will be able to take this feature to track Americans in their everyday movements. Many people are worried about accepting this feature into their everyday lives and they are unsure as to what over applications this feature will also be accessible in. When looking into Apples first versions of iOS5 coders actually found highly advantaged systems that tracked eye and mouth position that would also be passed onto other apps, not just the users iPhone.

      In result of this technological advance in cell phones, many small app developers will expand on this idea by intruding more privacy breaking features. A study done by Carnegie Mellon showed that face recognition can be used with other data to identify people who are walking around in public and provide instance information about their likes and dislikes based on their social media. Consumers are weary because in order to “wake up” their phone, their camera app will constantly have to be on. Many questions have been arising with this feature such as consent and whether or not they will be able to turn the feature completely off. Would law enforcement be able to access face data? Also there is the issue with racial differences and how lighter skinned people tend to be more easily recognized. Hopefully Apple will be able to answer these questions. This is the hot new technology and many people are viewing this as “the future”.

      The main concern regarding Apple’s new face recognition technology is the lack of privacy. As a result of this, many loyal customers may end up switching to other products other than Apple, just to avoid this issue. The truth is, as customers we will never truly know what is being measured and what is being recorded on our cell phones. The main issue of concern for iPhone X’s technology is who will trust it? This new feature will impact businesses as a whole because Apple will create competition and soon after, other companies will join in with features similar to this one. Many people including myself take their privacy very seriously because at the end of the day without privacy there would be chaos. Everything nowadays is a privacy issue, from technologic advances to the constant information you need to provide companies with on a daily basis. At the end of the day what would you choose, convenience or security?

  2. Shemar Givens September 22, 2017 at 3:51 pm #

    The new face recognition feature on the iPhone X has its pros and cons. It’s fascinating to see with each release apple is successful in pushing new emerging technology to surface. One pro is that it contains a new privacy and security system where you won’t have to worry much about others getting into your phone or trying set passwords to scheme their way through. Implementing facial recognition into the iPhone X gives people a secure way to unlocking their phone, authenticate purchases, and for storing their personal information. The chances of another being able to have access to your phone is slim to none, even if it’s stolen or misplaced, there’s no access to your intimate information.

    Although this feature is by far the best quality the phone may have to offer, there are also some cons that come forth. I still personally believe that all iPhones are very frail and despite having a case on they tend to break easily without applied pressure. That being said, if the front cameras happens to break then it kills the idea of using the face recognition. The government has the ability to control and authorize a lot of the things we use today like internet use, phones, computers, and more. A part of me strongly believes that this face recognition feature is a way for everyone to be monitored by the government. When your privacy settings are being adjusted there’s speculations that government are watching your moves. Same goes for a webcam on a laptop, the government have the technology that is able to aid them into watching our every move.

  3. Valerie Dorsett September 22, 2017 at 4:00 pm #

    Today we live in a world where smartphones can be smarter than some people. Everyone, even young children are owners of smartphones such as the IPhone and Samsung Galaxy. Technology is advancing at an immense rate. It seems as if every year something new is being released to the public. Apple previously used to use your unique finger print as ID to get into your phone. Now, with the new IPhone X Apple has taken this step a whole lot further with its new facial recognition password so that way you can unlock your phone. This seems like a very cool idea, however, some people have mixed feelings whether this was a good idea or not.
    Apple has been pretty good at getting a wide range of acceptance whenever they release a new IPhone to the public. The article, Apple’s Use of Facial Recognition in the New IPhone: Implications, states that, “…the new phones’ capabilities will include the ability to measure 30,000 infrared, three-dimensional points on a user’s face, the ability to distinguish a real face from photographs and masks, and extremely low false-positive and false-negative rates,” which means with this new advanced technology from other companies coming together with Apple, they will be able to successfully be able to read anybodies real face only, if it works (ACLU National). However, some people could find this untrustworthy. Uncertainty has caused Apple to release a statement saying, “the face recognition data will be stored locally on users’ phones, and not transmitted to a central database,” which brings more people at ease, but who really knows if this is true or not.
    Facial Recognition might not only be used on apps that are connected to Apple. This could easily make privacy problems arise. The article states that, “the new phone’s face recognition capability will be ‘laced throughout’ the operating system,” which means that many outside apps will have the ability to know the users face (ACLU National). I can imagine that soon apps will redo their policy and if you do not read through it and just accept the new terms and conditions, you will unknowingly allow them to see what you look like. Who knows what else facial recognition might be used for? The article adds, “Carnegie Mellon researchers in 2011 showed that face recognition could be combined with social networking data to identify people walking around in public and provide instant information about their interests based on their social media data,” which is a huge privacy problem and could leak personal information out of the outside world such as companies and the government as well (ACLU National). Information as such would be troublesome to many if it got leaked. I know what I would not want this happening to me or anyone else in my family or to my friends.
    This also raises many other questions that one may have about how your IPhone X will function with this new feature. Since you need to use facial recognition to open up your phone many people are wondering if their phone camera will always be on. This concerns me as well because I would never want my camera on all the time because they could possibly track my location and actions. I would imagine lots of people would not be comfortable with this as well. Many people also ask, will the law be able to access our facial recognition? Apple, as stated before said that facial recognition will only be kept on one’s phone only. However, who knows if this is true or how long it will go on for. Another issue people are concerned about is how it will react to people of all races. Apple revealed that the scanner will even be able to recognize everyone’s face in the dark, but will this truly work for everyone? We hope so, but some people still question its credibility.
    Facial Recognition is definitely something new that people can enjoy. Personally, I do not think I am on board with it yet. Not until I know that this new feature is safe for sure. The article says, “Face recognition is becoming a hot technology, with many seeing it as exemplifying ‘the future’,” which I can agree on because we are becoming more technologically advanced every year (ACLU National). However, whether this is a good or bad thing we will have to find out in the future as well.

  4. Jeffrey Khoudary September 22, 2017 at 5:44 pm #

    Companies have been storing our data and analyzing data to improve their business models since the begin of business. There is a lot of incentive a company to know what product people will want and smartphones make this easier than ever. There are thousands of data points that can be collected from every smartphone about every habit that a person has. There are bigger implications that these new features have than the actual face recognition itself, and that is data that the sensors can collect. The possibilities that these sensors have are only limited by a designers imagination.

    I think the biggest use of the sensor will be for advertising. The infrared sensor has the ability to track your eye movement. Marketing company dream about being able to know when a customer is looking at an advertisement and are aware of their reaction to it. The new iPhone X is a device that can do this, and it will be in the hands of millions of customers around the world.

    One the feature is released into the hand of developers there will be no limitations to its uses. Even if Apple puts restrictions on the sensors, which they have, hackers will bypass them. Other applications will start implementing this sensor into their software functions. Applications might use it to see what mood you are in and then display an advertisement based on your mood. The feature could be used to detect that the current user’s gender and then show an advertisement targeted to that person.

    I don’t think that implications about the government tracking people are severe. I think the profit incentives that the feature will open up should be the real news story. I believe that it was a brilliant feature to implement because people won’t think about it, it will allow better-targeted ads and they can add another stream of income for Apple.

  5. Andre Bakhos September 22, 2017 at 6:18 pm #

    It is a Friday afternoon at the office, and you finally finished all your work for the week. To reward yourself, you log into Facebook and look at your feed. While still logged into Facebook, you go onto a website to browse for a pair of shoes, as your old ones are wearing thin. The clock turns to 5pm, and you finally leave the office to go home for the weekend. When you open up the Facebook app on your iPhone to browse your feed later on in the day, you notice the exact pair of shoes you were looking at while at work featured in an advertisement. It has to be a coincidence, right? Then you see an ad regarding the restaurant chain you looked up when making dinner plans the other night. How could this be? The simple answer is, your every move online is being tracked by some tech company, and used for targeted advertisements.
    Since the beginning of human existence, people have always enjoyed a certain level of security regarding their thoughts. Unless you wrote something down on a piece of paper, told someone, or published it, it would always be safe with you. Now, in the twenty-first century, if you write something on a computer, hoping to keep it safe, someone with knowledge on how to hack can retrieve it and expose you to the world. Tech giants, such as Facebook, Apple, and Google, are known to track information that you input into their devices, search engines, and products, and utilize that information for research and targeted advertisements. When websites give you a notification saying, “This website uses cookies to enhance your experience,” they are actually saying, “We use cookies to track what you type, what you read, and what you search.” You have two choices, allow the companies to track your every move, or you can simply not use the internet.
    Apple has recently unveiled a new facial recognition software for use with the iPhone X. This feature will allow the phone’s camera to take a 3D scan of the user’s face, and if the scan matches the facial map on file with the user, than the phone will unlock. While this feature seems revolutionary, it has been in use by Facebook since 2011, so it is nothing new. Since it was implemented, facial recognition has been used in “tagging” friends in photos, once Facebook recognizes the person in the picture. Technology such as this has limited security of people, because if they wish to remain anonymous in a photograph, they no longer have that option. Apple has said that image data will be stored locally only, and not collected in a database, but as stated in the article, companies have gone back on their word before. Apple could silently change their stance on only storing data on the user’s phone, and in the blink of an eye, have millions of faces on file to use for whatever they wish. Moreover, what is to stop a hacker from accessing your iPhone, lifting the facial data off it, and using it against you by creating fake ID’s passports, and photographs?
    Apart from Apple and Facebook potentially storing facial data and actually storing facial data, respectively, facial recognition is a secure way to keep your phone locked, right? Well, there are some ways around this security feature, and while no method of security is 100% safe, facial recognition seems amongst the easiest to bypass. If the phone’s owner is asleep, you can take their phone and point it at their face, unlocking it, and its contents. If a photograph of the person is available, you can scan that, and unlock their phone. The point is, there are better ways to keep a phone and its contents safe from being unlocked or opened, such as a password that, unlike a face, can be changed immediately if need be. Apple could potentially use your facial data, combined with your location, to pinpoint exactly who you are, where you are, and what you are doing. This “big brother” scenario is becoming the norm, as tech companies are growing more powerful with each new product. While there are restrictions on what data they can mine from devices, why is the public allowing them to push those boundaries?
    Technology is advancing for the better, but people must be careful as to what parts they use. Tech companies did not grow to be as large as they are simply by guessing their user’s habits; they tracked them, stored them, and implemented them for profit. Expect more companies to follow suit, such as Apple with their facial recognition software, and start to use that to mine data from users. There has been a clear breach of ethics on the part of tech companies, and it needs to be addressed on a large scale, and put to a stop.

  6. TraceeF September 22, 2017 at 6:41 pm #

    Apple’s new iPhone face recognition feature is definitely a revolution all in it’s own, however the new security system is not very comforting. Although the facial recognition has proven to work well enough for apple to actually put the product out, there are many other programs and apps with facial recognition that glitch. With all the new iPhone apps such as the wallet and banking apps, the possibility that someone could take your phone and use the facial recognition as a password is not very safe. Apple has reassured most of their buyers that the chances of someone else being able to unlock the phone using facial recognition are slightly to none, but mostly all new technologies have their setbacks when they are first released.
    In addition Apple has released a statement that says that Apple will not sell the facial recognition data to other companies and that it’s just stored in the individual phone. Though this may be true, there are still many ways Apple could release that information to other companies. In my opinion the facial recognition feature has the same red flags as the google glasses. Both new technologies while completely amazing and hugely innovative pose a threat to privacy. These observations aside, Apple is a powerful company and their following is so large that even if the facial recognition did have multiple glitches, they’d be able to handle the situation and still keep their customers.
    If the facial recognition proves to be a success it will open up the door for many other groundbreaking technologies. We will definitely see more facial recognition in all kinds of things. This however could pose another threat. If Apple has decided that they won’t share their software then the rest of the companies have to try and replicate. If a company decides to make alarm systems with facial recognition, but their software isn’t as well structured as Apple’s that company will face a lot of turmoil.

  7. Brian Ayoub September 22, 2017 at 8:20 pm #

    Technology is improving each and every passing day. One of the instrumental pioneers for this technological advancement is Apple. Just recently, Apple debuted their newest phone, the iPhone X. Besides the sleek design change, the most talked about innovation feature is face recognition. This provides another option of unlocking your phone if you don’t want to write a pass code or use your fingerprint. The first cause of concern that opened my eyes is whether or not a picture of your face would be feasible enough to unlock the phone. When I first saw the new face recognition feature, I thought that my friends can unlock my phone just by pulling up a picture of my face. This is not only my concern, most people share this concern as well. Apple assures users that they have acquired good enough technology to avoid this concern. The phone has capabilities to “measure 30,000 infrared, three dimensional points on a user’s face, the ability to distinguish a real face from photographs and masks.” Time will tell whether or not Apple is telling the truth and whether the iPhone X will prove to set the standard for face recognition in smart phones.
    The next cause of concern for face recognition in the iPhone X is privacy. More specifically, “the always-on nature of the phone’s camera”, scares people. How will the phone be able to detect your face if it is off at night? That’s the question that all are asking. For me, I wouldn’t trust the face recognition because I’m cautious about what I put online and I like to be secure. This is not possible if my phone camera is always on ready to detect my face. I have faith in Apple since my experience with iPhones has been always positive. However, the easiest way to unlock my phone will continue to be fingerprint since its with a touch of a button and I don’t have to worry about my privacy being invaded.
    Finally, a widely reported problem that face recognition apps have is whether or not the technology to detect dark-skinned people as easily as light-skinned people. This would be disastrous for Apple if people report problems with the feature. All over social media people would ridicule the company for putting out a racially defective product. I know I would not be impressed if users report this issue. To me, if I’m a innovator like Apple, I would never put out a new product unless I was 100% sure that something like this would never happen. A company as big in stature as Apple should put in as much funds as possible to keep their product’s integrity in tact.
    To conclude, I don’t really care for face recognition since I am happy with finger-print unlocking. I don’t trust face recognition because there will always be questions about privacy. I’m content with my current iPhone 6s but I will be looking forward to hearing the feedback from people who buy the new iPhone and interested to see if Apple keeps their word on concerns brought up about the new face recognition.

  8. Chris O'Handley September 22, 2017 at 8:33 pm #

    Jay Stanley’s article about the new iPhone X brings up a few interesting points. The main new feature for this year’s iPhone is that you can unlock the screen by simply showing your face. The new system includes extensive face-recognition capabilities that are said to have very little false-positive or false-negative mistakes. However this new development of technology is just the latest instance that makes us wonder if we should trust this technology. Nowadays, people’s lives are so attached to their phones it seems impossible to live without them. We trust our phones with so much information but we never know for sure who can gain access to that information. Apple has said that the face recognition will be solely used for each individual’s phone and not transmitted to a central database but what about the other apps on the phone. Most apps already use our location to help run more efficiently but how long until they decide face-recognition will help with their apps as well. Once we allow Apple to use facial recognition, it is easier to see us allowing facial recognition in other areas of our life. If we accept facial recognition as a part of our everyday lives, it may not be long before we have to do a facial scan do anything. I realize this is a little bit far-fetched and at the moment we appear nowhere close to finding ourselves in a 1984 type situation but it can be little things like these that can possibly end up leading to something like that. What I do not understand is why the facial recognition technology is even necessary. I think I have a simple enough time pressing holding my finger over the home button to unlock my phone. There is nothing difficult about it and I do not see how facial recognition would make things easier. What ever happened to the saying if it’s not broken, don’t fix it. Apple’s phones work fine just the way they are and there is really no reason to make any changes this controversial. The only reason I can see why they have to come out with a big new feature like this is to give people a reason to buy the new phone instead of keeping their old one which obviously makes sense, we know Apple wants to make as much money as possible but this feature is just simply unnecessary. If Apple wants people to buy their new phone, they should listen to the actual complaints people have about the phone. People want a charger that does not break so easily. They want a headphone jack so they can charge their phone and listen to music at the same time. Apple can install the wildest new features like facial recognition and touch id, but they cannot put in a headphone jack? Apple has a history of making things purposely difficult for their customers so they can make more money and this could just be another example of that. Even if it is not, the feature is controversial but we know Apple has had a history of achieving widespread acceptance even on their more controversial technologies.

  9. Shiyun Ye September 22, 2017 at 8:47 pm #

    Apple claims that they will have the new feature of face recognition on its latest iPhone X. It sounds exiting but it contains many potential problems on the infringement of privacy. With the easy access on people’s faces, virtual world’s criminals such as hackers or identification thief will find that it is much easier to get iPhone users’ data. Moreover, the iPhone’s iCloud celebrity photo leaking scandal on August 31, 2014 decreased the iPhone’s reputation on protecting its users’ data, which raised the doubt on how will iPhone save the collections of the face recognition. According to iPhone management, it will keep these data in an encrypted safe place. However, with today’s technology, online data is not safe in many senses. Therefore, the first question brought up regarding to the new feature is the insecurity of face collections. With the constant worries on whether these data may leak one day, users certainly cannot active the function with ease. Moreover, another problem related to security is that with the new face recognition feature, the camera of iPhone has to be in active mode all the time. What will happen if the camera record something that does not require in the face recognitions? For example, if the camera starts by itself and records the user’s daily life without consent. Is not it a serious infringement of privacy?

    Despite the privacy concern of the new feature, the author makes a positive assuming that the common use of face recognition in the future will not affect how people’s perceptions on this new technology. For example, even if the face recognition technology applies to daily camera scanning, which is to obtain the basic personal information of a person. According to author’s idea, it will not be an issue because people has the conscious mind that they will not let the technology taking over their power. However, I personally do not agree with this point of view. When getting people’s information by just scanning their faces become persuasive in the future, it might can change people’s perspectives that accessing others’ data is a quite normal action. Therefore, the stalkers have a great excuse on constantly inspecting others. A famous TV series “Black Mirror” has demonstrated in one of their episodes that the updated technologies has created more conflicts among people because now they have more accesses on the information they normally could not have before. For example, in the episode, people do not watch movies anymore. They watch their own memories by a new technology called “memory stick” which is a small chip inserted behind people’s ears. It totally changes how people live their life and how they interact with others. Moreover, the “memory stick” is taking over their own power to control their life. Therefore, I think if people get to accept the new feature of iPhone X easily and treat it as a common thing in life, they will accept more spookier things easily as well, which can create a loss of control. Therefore, whether the feature of face recognition will success is still under inspecting.

  10. Michael Dias September 22, 2017 at 9:38 pm #

    The release of the iPhone X has taken the technology world by storm as Apple introduces yet another flagship device meant to trump the competition and offer the public a better mobile experience. With this new device come many new features. Features including facial recognition in order to unlock your phone and also to use apps. Facial recognition has been around in Samsung and other android phones for years, yet it has always been seen as “faulty” and “impractical”. Now when Apple, arguably the most popular and most successful phone company to exist by far, releases this feature, it is seen as “the future”. One problem I have seen with Apple phones throughout the years is how when android platforms launch a feature, it is often disregarded or overlooked. Yet when Apple releases the same feature years later, it is seen as new and innovative. This however is not the point of this article. This article speaks on the security concerns, normalization, and issues that arise with the iPhone X and its facial recognition feature. One of the biggest concerns is how easy it would be to break into a phone that has this facial recognition. Apple does claim that photographs and models would not work, as there are “30,000 infrared, three-dimensional points on a user’s face, the ability to distinguish a real face from photographs and masks, and extremely low false-positive and false-negative rates”. According to Apple, this makes it hard and nearly impossible for someone aside from the phone’s owner to access the phone. Subsequently, another concern is the publication of a person’s facial recognition being accessible on a mass database. To this, Apple claims that the consumer may rest assured as “the face recognition data will be stored locally on users’ phones, and not transmitted to a central database.” As assuring as that may sound, there is still cause for concern as we do not know how much of this is actually true, and how easily this information can be hacked. Furthermore, there are many claims that the facial recognition system does not work as well with dark-skinned people as it does with those that are light-skinned. Is this racial discrimination, or just faulty technology? And has Apple solved this problem? In a world fueled by “cultural appropriation”, this can be a massive blow to Apple if the system does in fact not work well with those of a darker skin. At the end of the day, we can only hope for the best and prepare for the worst.

  11. Ameer Richmond September 23, 2017 at 9:13 pm #

    There are many pros and cons to the new facial recognition feature on the new iPhone X. What stands out about it is the quick new way to unlock the phone and everyone will not have access to the phone as before. The fact that this is the new way of technology is good, but as the article states there is major cons to this, the security and privacy of the phones owner is at risk. What I do not agree with is the implications this can make and how Apple has had the ability to apply this for quite some time. I personally feel as if Apple had this technology and did not want to tell their users about it.

    The user of the phone in my opinion has more to lose than Apple, as the article states how will Police and other authorities be able to track and measure your where abouts and what you are doing with this feature. The third party applications are another thing that is very sketchy to me. How will other apps be able to access and maintain your approval of purchase without Finger Print ID without it. I feel like the bigger issue at hand is the storage of the Face Recognition and how Apple will deal with other companies using and making sure none of these are stored. The thought process behind this idea is very forward in time, but very risky none the less. I am interested to see how the new iPhone X will do on the market with this feature.

  12. Leah September 24, 2017 at 6:28 pm #

    Apple has been the leader in the cellphone market because of its innovative and unique aspects of each iphone model. Apple has improved each generation of the Iphone to help make the customers cellular experience easier. Now, being on the model of the newest iphone X, or the 10th iphone, they have released the specs and unique factors of the phone. There is one problem that people are worried about, and that is the facial recognition to unlock your device. The phone will use facial and iris recognition to unlock your phone.
    There are many problems with this technology that would raise concern for the users. There are threats of databases storing the information of each individual’s facial recognition as well as simple social media having pictures of individuals. There are other aspects that interfere with the facial awareness working such as the idea of the iphone camera always being on. Also, all individuals have different facial features from skin tone, to piercing and tattoos.
    In my opinion, this is not the first time a cell company tried to use any recognition of the human body to unlock a phone. On computers, they use the webcam at some situations, to log into the computer. As well as, cellphones now how the fingerprint detection that uses a finger of choice to unlock the phone. I personally do not believe in using facial or fingerprint recognition, I am concerned not only with the safety of it but as well as if it would one day stop working. I am unsure of using a finger print if there is trauma to the skin, which will distort or make it unable for me to unlock my phone. Also, another fear of mine is the fear of replication. As stated in the article, it could easily be done that someone creates a 3D mask of your face to hack your phone.
    In summary, I am concerned of the privacy and safety of the iphone X. I am sure that before launching the phone, they have thought about all the possibilities of implications and problems that would arise.

  13. Lucas Nieves-Violet September 28, 2017 at 9:54 pm #

    The use of technology is great and practical once it reaches us, the public. However, the people who have the most control over it are those who create it and the governments that allow it to be accessible. The truth is when the public receives a new technology it isn’t truly new. It’s already dated. Most times when new technologies come out, governments and military already have their hands on the next to the new device. In most cases, the public only becomes accustomed to it years after its first discovery.
    While Apple isn’t the first phone company to have incorporated facial recognition, they will surely be the one that has the most influence. Apple’s, audience is broad but mostly young, the company is known for bringing new technology advances and making them familiar to the public. However, this article is more about the power of facial recognition and fears people may have to adapt to, going in on this new technology frontier. The first question is simple and expected, as discussed in the article customers will be concerned with the fact that the Iphone X’s front camera will always be turned on. The feeling of having a device constantly watching you is not so settling. Apple’s promise however, is that the facial scan and recognition will not be connected to any database. On the contrary, it will only be attached to the mainframe of the phone itself. Therefore, all the facials prints registered by the phones will not be connected with one another nor linked to public servers. While this may be reassuring, and although Apple has promised to not share their files or facials scans with government agencies; we all understand that they can never be sure that those scans will remain private.
    It’s not all negative though, fear of facial scan may not be much of a problem if people become against it, as there will also be the option of turning the setting off. As customers, we will still have the possibility of imputing our old four number digit code. In the case that facial recognition does work then it may not be so bad after all. It will open many doors for other tech giants Like Facebook and Google. More importantly, more tech geeks will be attracted to use this feature to create new apps and games in the Apple store, making it again more friendly and accessible. But here again, we will accounter the problem of government agencies having access to those scans since the apps will be promoted and produced by third parties not specifically part of Apple.
    Security and protecting the client’s right is huge deal and issue for Apple they want their consumer to feel like their opinion is valued and so protecting the customer’s privacy is important to the company. The big problem, however, comes when people start to work a way around facial recognition. It is inevitable that people will try to find alternatives to unlock facial scans by using pictures, videos or masks of a person. During the announcement/launch of the new iPhone X Apple claimed that this issue is doubtful as the chances of tricking the camera to unlock the phone are one out of a million. The big problem is what happens when people find that one in a million factor or angle that makes the camera tick? While this may be unlikely if it does occur this will destroy Apple’s idea of bringing the technology to the public in fact, if this technology is not safe to use it will become useless and customers will shy away from using it rendering the technology useless.

  14. VM September 29, 2017 at 4:17 pm #

    The new iPhone X’s face recognition capabilities have both its pros and cons. The level of creativity Apple has been able to master is astonishing to me. As consumers, we constantly find ourselves saying, “what will they come out with next?!”, and Apple just continues to surprise, amaze, and execute.
    Some pros that this new technology that I found to be great ideas and advances are that it is very capable as well as compatible, as addressed in one of the first paragraphs. Apple has acquired several face recognition companies and has made this new technology to have the ability to distinguish a real face from pictures and masks, and very low false positive and false negative rates. This is something I was curious about when I first heard that this new tech was being put on the market and into the new phone. Another thing I thought was interesting and nice about this was that Apple said that the face recognition data will be stored locally on the person’s phone and NOT transmitted to a central database. I believe that when it comes to information and things we share daily through our phones and computers aren’t even thought about sometimes, in terms of where the information could potentially actually be going. So, the fact that pictures of the user’s face will not be stored in a central database is comforting to me. Another thing to think about with this advancement is, as all “phone-locking” options, it’s optional! If someone doesn’t like it they could always just disable it and not use it at all.
    There are also some cons to this new advanced technology. One major con as well as concern, as usual in the tech world, is privacy and security. As touched on in the article, this advancement could be an open door to more companies implementing this sort of technology. More apps and companies will likely make strides to implement future technologies like this. To me this is a con because of the privacy factor. Not every company will get it right in my opinion which could be a concern. Something else I agree with in the concerns section of the article is the fact that the camera won’t necessarily always be in sleep mode. It will always be on. In that case, security is again another factor. This can lead to recordings that people are unaware of or even just pictures. Lastly, something I found interesting was the blurb about racial differences. I did not even think of this factor, but it makes a lot of sense. I would hope that Apple considered this and worked on the glitches it could bring about.

  15. Meghan Healy September 29, 2017 at 5:33 pm #

    After Apple’s press release of the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, people have not stopped talking about face recognition being the new way to unlock the phone. From touch ID to new emoji’s, every improvement Apple releases always has people raving, and this new form of a passcode is no different. We seemed to have finally achieved the futuristic goals of the 1900s, minus the flying cars. However, with this new release comes doubt. People have been questioning the new feature’s practicality, wondering “will it recognize me when I take my makeup off?”

    People are inevitability worried about Apple’s database storing the face recognition data. But as the article states, “for the time being there are far bigger, more comprehensive collections of individuals’ photographs, including the state DMV databases, and photo databases maintained by the State Department and Customs and Border Protection, not to mention Facebook and Google, which store billions of photographs.” Almost every company and corporation uses technology that has the capability of storing our private information and our pictures. Especially in the age of social media, our pictures are everywhere. What difference does it make if Apple has our picture in a different way?

    People also worry about the technology becoming invasive, and believe that this new advancement is another step of living in a world completely controlled by technology and robots. We happen to live in a technology driven world where almost our every move is tracked. It is not too surprising that we are not as secure as we thought. The article states, “Carnegie Mellon researchers in 2011 showed that face recognition could be combined with social networking data to identify people walking around in public and provide instant information about their interests based on their social media data.” No wonder people are concerned with this upgrade exposing our lives to the outside world. With the bloom of social media, our personal lives have unavoidably become public. From sharing our relationship status on Facebook to sharing our location on Snapchat, it seems that nothing is private in our world anymore. People my age have even made a career out of exposing their personal lives and subjecting themselves to the internet by posting videos on YouTube. To get more known, you might as well share your darkest secrets in order to get views. That fact that people make a living by posting YouTube videos basically means that we have giving up our security.

    The camera of an iPhone will always have to be on with this feature. This causes people to raise even more concerns regarding their privacy. Photographs or masks supposedly will not be able to unlock the phone, but the article states that people will inevitably find a way to break that protection. We live in a day in age where hackers can get into anything. The article also states, “security is always a tradeoff against other values such as convenience” claiming that people would trade their security for the ability to unlock their phone with almost no effort. With hackers, this new unlocking feature could potentially become useless. The hackers’ abilities will eventually render face recognition short-lived. The only memory of this supposed breakthrough in technology will be when someone casually mentions to a friend, “remember that brief period of time when we were able to unlock our phone with our face?”

  16. Ryan McFadden September 29, 2017 at 6:37 pm #

    Facial recognition is an incredible technology, which can be a great tool to keep unwanted people out, or it could be a technology that is used against its user. The safety of peoples content within their phone is already safe with finger print scanners imbedded within most smart phones on the market today. Both Apple and Android phones use finger print technology to unlock their phones. This is just as safe and unbreakable as a facial recognition scanner. So is this necessary? How well will in work in low light settings or someone who wears glasses? Will they have to put on or take off the glasses every time they want to unlock their phone?
    Now we get to the data bases of facial recognition data. People are scared of the government or malicious entities getting a hold of this data, well they already have this data and if they don’t, as this article stated Facebook, Google and many other websites have this data and it can be easily found by law enforcement. The area of concern however is search and seizure. There have been multiple court cases asking whether law enforcement can or cannot force a person to unlock their phone using their fingerprint, this is a Fourth Amendment issue, which states there must be a warrant for the government to search or seize a private citizens property. This issue will inevitable come up once again when facial recognition goes main stream with the new iPhone. This is not the part that scares me the most.
    The part about facial recognition that scares me the most is hackers. Currently on the iPhone if you use Apple pay you use your finger print to authorize the purchase. Now imagine a hacker hacking your phone while you are on Skype or FaceTime. They have your face in the view of the scanner, will they be able to drain your bank account by saying you authorized the transfer of money through Apple pay to one of their accounts based off of your face? These are the areas that are most scary to me.

  17. Piyush Patel September 29, 2017 at 8:01 pm #

    Every year Apple gets tricks many of their consumers into buying the new model of the iPhone, making people think their iPhone 7 is no longer good enough or up to date because the iPhone X has come out. I know several people that almost think as if it has an impact on their social status if they are not up to date with the newest apple products. They’re going to do it again with the iPhone X. So most of the people that are going to be buying it are not going to care about the privacy issue. They see it as something cool and amazing that they can show off to their friends or just use and be cool. The article states that “many people have worried that Apple’s launch of the face recognition will socialize Americans into accepting face recognition as a part of their everyday lives”. This is not okay because people will not understand the security risk that comes with it. But I guess there is a tradeoff for everything to advance technology there will always be areas for it to be misused until it is perfected. For now they say the face recognition data will be left on the phone and not sent to Apple. I agree with the article when it says the cost benefit doesn’t make sense when you think of it as the benefit being your comfort to unlock you phone easily versus the cost of being identified using street cameras. However, in private setting like an office space it can help keep the security of the area by keeping only the people that should be in the area there and alerting the right people if an intruder comes. As long as its control on the users side in their own private areas that they agree to. Software and technology should not have any space in public areas or places where people would not authorize them to be identified.
    The article goes on to talk about how the face recognition privacy policy is probably not going to embraced the same strict way by other companies like Facebook and Google whose apps are on the iPhones. It goes on to state that these and other third-party apps will be able to tap into the face-recognition software. I believe Apple should make all apps on their phone only let the functionality if the agree to keep the face-recognition data only on the phone and not send out of it. However, I feel like Facebook and other companies will find a way to get consumers to agree to a policy where consumers agree to send the face-recognition data to Facebook’s severs so the consumers can tag people easier or something. I honestly believe that the government can identify people on street cameras they set up on streets and are doing it now. I read this article about the sinister project started by the FBI to be able to track any face for counter terrorism and criminal activity. The FBI started this back in 2012! Companies like Facebook and google are probably going to gather information to send you much better advertising that is more related to you. In a way this is a huge advancement in technology but at the same time they’re basically spying on people and gather more information on you than you really know about yourself. I agree with Adre Bakhos and other people in the blog that many tech companies today are taking advantage of loop holes or open policy that allows them to basically take away all of our privacy. If we do not do anything to stop them, and it’s clear that today a lot of tech companies them self are very vulnerable to attack, we can be risking a lot more than just our privacy. Since these companies can get so much information just based on facial recognition information, when put in the wrong hands, they can use the information against you. All in all, I think technological advance is necessary for a better future but only if I is secure enough to benefit the consumer and let the consumer clearly know the cons.

  18. Emma Lupo October 4, 2017 at 9:05 pm #

    At this point in time, technology is evolving faster than humans. We are at the point where it is difficult to keep up with the amount of improvements being made everyday to technology. The latest, and perhaps one of the most controversial advancement to technology is the facial recognition feature on the new iPhone. This feature allows users to unlock their phones completely hands-free. The iPhone now has the ability to track more than 30,000 pinpoints on your face and unlock instantly with no finger print required. It is also rumored that this feature could work with Apple Pay as well, allowing users to make purchases with just a quick glance at your screen. Introducing a new feature on the iPhone is nothing out of the ordinary for Apple. This company prospers on their unique identity of innovation. Even though most of the time the updates are exceptionally popular, this particular update seems to be more controversial than most. In today’s world, where most people are concerned with their safety, especially the safety of their devices, is facial recognition going to blow up the way Apple hopes it will? There are pros and cons to this new update.

    This facial recognition update will phase out the fingerprint sensors that have been used to unlock iPhones for the past couple of years. It will use advanced systems such as retinal scanning and forward-facing 3D sensors to track many points on the users face, and unlock the phone in under one second. The speed of this feature is one of its benefits. It also offers accuracy—being able to identify slight changes in ones appearance, such as a change in eye color or hair color, or the position of one’s face. As noted above, speed is one of the main attractions of this feature. There would be virtually no wait time when using you’re phone. Security, which is one of the main concerns with this update, uses 3D mapping of the user’s face for security purposes. With more than 30,000 security points, facial recognition is said to be far more secure than the fingerprint.

    While there are many convincing benefits of this facial recognition feature, there are still many concerns that have been raised. One of the most common concerns of this feature is that some people may feel physically uncomfortable while using facial recognition. I do not know a single person who would not feel odd lifting their phone up in front of their face to unlock their phone in public. The most worrisome feature on this update would perhaps be the “resting unlock” feature. This allows users to unlock their phones without the device even being in their hands. This could potentially give someone else access to your information without your permission, just by placing the phone in front of your face. There is also a pressing concern of whether or not this feature will be saving countless pictures to an unknown database. Will your data be available to others, or for your eyes only?
    New technology always has its pros and cons.

    Facial recognition is most likely filling some Apple customers with nervousness, but it does have a number of benefits to offer. The trick that technology companies use is to always push new and positive ideas towards the public, even if they end up failing. This new idea definitely pushes the boundaries a bit, but definitely has potential to be successful down the road.

  19. Rebecca Hu October 6, 2017 at 4:21 pm #

    There is always this worry on the balance of technology. Technology control human, or human control by technology. It is great to see big companies such as Apple introducing new and innovating technology to the general public. With the recent release of IPhone X and its cut edge technology of face recognition. We begin to question about privacy issue related to the consumer’s personal information. Especially after recent incident with Equifax, our information can be easily accessible by other hackers. If there is a will, there is always a way to get around security features.
    This is not the first time Apple introduces a unique feature to unlock phones. The general public always been exposed and being influenced under the cool tech from movies and dramas. At least for me, I always wanted to be like a spy where you can unlock your device with your fingerprints. Feels like you are living in the future. With this new feature of facial recognition in the new IPhone, seems like our information are more vulnerable to attacks.
    According to the article, Apple will not collect and store the data of Face recognition on only base. It will be stored and handle in to the phone, and the owner have control of that information. Technology advances our lifestyle and society. However, your personal information could be monitored closely by the government, or anyone who figure out to get past the system. Cameras, location service, fingerprint unlock systems, can collect your personal information and being used for purposes that you did not intend to used it. Technology that once were seen so beneficial to society all become a security threat. I saw many students on campus have either put a sticky note or band aid to cover up their front cam. Many people are worried about other people having access to the front camera.
    I believe we have come to a stage, we agree on the idea that big technology companies such as Apple, Google or Facebook they know more about us than our parents. With all those personal information it indicates they need a base to storage those information. Just think about the consequences of the government having access to those sensitive information about you. With IPhone’s excellent camera and recording function, it can be easily used as a tool to spy on your privacy. With recent incidents relating to terrorism, in the name of homeland safety privacy seems like something we throw away. Because in the name of justice and security, it is justifiable for the government to monitor everyone coming into the nation.
    Although we are questioning about the privacy and hypothetical threats that could pop up with the new facial recognition feature, I don’t think people are really going to have big concerns about it. I remember when IPhone 5 came out with the new finger ID picture, people panicked. The general public thinks that the government and Apple are working on collecting fingerprints and information around the world. People were afraid about the feature, it didn’t really have an impact on the usage. People still use it day to day to unlock their phones or access payments with it. People are just afraid of things they don’t know first, I think with the help of time we can see the more common usage of face recognition features in technology. Ever since we are so closely “connected” by the internet and technology, privacy have always been an issue. This is an issue that is long term, it does not have a remedy that can fix it right away. It is a constant battle between security, privacy and hackers.

  20. Arielle Fortes October 6, 2017 at 6:47 pm #

    If you think about the worlds laziest creature, which one would you think of? A sloth? A koala? Or maybe another animal that does not generally like to move around. However, I believe these species of animal that is the laziest is humanity. Humanity has always distinguished itself from other animals by using their brains. Howeve, much of the ingenuity we have had throughout the ages are due to the fact that we would like to make things simplier for ourselves. This ingenuity due to our internal laziness is not necessarily a bad things as we have managed to make many different inventions that have assisted humanities growth. From the wheel to the phone different inventions have continually helped us. At the same time different inventions also have had unforeseen consequences throughout the years. Recently, many companies have been focuses on making the phone more complex overall. We have had technology in phones that have allowed people to use only their fingerprint to open phones and the newest technology is facial recognition. However this may have more consequences than intended.
    Most recently, the company Apple released its new technology on its iPhone X which will have more of impact on the world than what we think on the surface. One of the main question that the public has in general is whether or not the technology will actually work. This is a valid question due to the fact that there has been anything like this new technology on a phone before. The other problem is that it may become normal to have technology like this on our phones. This is a more advanced version of technology which can originally be hard to implement at first glance. And phones are something that in this century we take for granted when in fact they are very high tech items that can help us to communicate, obtain knowledge and much more. Normalization of this technology will mean that it can be used broadly in many aspects of technology. The problem with this is that there will be no problem with other application s using this data as well so that there will not be any privacy. If this happens it will be a lot easier for other application to track people since now they can recognize their faces. This will have a big impact on privacy. Since there is this technology there are bound to be some people who will take advantage of this fact and will use it in a negative way. This means that in the future companies or even the government would find tracking people much easier that nit was before. So, even if this facial recognition does not have a big impact the future uses based on it definitely will. Also, if facial recognition is working on these new phones won the camera always s have to be on? Since people may need to use their phones at any time it would not make too much sense foot the phone to be off all the time. Since we take the phone with us everywhere this would be a huge invasion of privacy if it was always on. There are some people who leave their phone near them when they are changing which means it would not be hard for someone to hack into their phone and see very personal moments that other would not want people to see. Also when face recognition comes into play it brings up the question on whether or not the face masks or other things may be able to get past the system. And even it ‘face masks’ will not work it is likely that people will find another loophole. In addition, facial recognition is not protected by any type of law so it may be easier for law enforcement to receive information. So there is no reason for a warrant to be used when asking for this type of information.

  21. Eric A October 13, 2017 at 11:41 am #

    This article focuses on the facial recognition technology Apple recently released. By definition, “facial recognition is a biometric method of identifying an individual by comparing live capture or digital image data with the stored record for that person.” ( While this is a new consumer technology, the U.S. government has had variants of the technology since the 1960’s. (FBI) It was nowhere near as advanced as what Apple is releasing, but the point is the technology is nothing new.
    The article dedicates an entire section to how these kinds of potentially pervasive “conveniences” are becoming normalized in our lives. I think that there is definitely truth to this. When Apple released the iPhone 5s a few years back, the phone came with a fingerprint sensor. Initially many were skeptical and raised many of the same questions the author of this article raises. Now, in 2017, fingerprint unlocking software on phones is normal. Many of the new smartphones hitting the market today are equipped with the technology and I can’t think of a time where it was compromised to affect users in a negative way. I’m not saying that facial recognition and fingerprints are the same thing or can be used the same way, but they do show a natural progression in the way we use our unique physical features in conjunction with technology to make our lives easier.
    The privacy concerns that the author brings up are also very real. Oftentimes technologies that are designed to make our lives easier can also make it easier for criminals to harm us. If they are able to break the securities in place and access this kind of information there’s no telling what they could do with it. The companies always say that these kinds of technologies are safe and protected with top-notch security, however, if you turn on the news you can see that these kinds of “top-notch” securities are broken almost daily with data breaches now a normal part of our lives. Ultimately, as the article states, convenience often comes with a tradeoff of privacy and it will be up to the user to decide if convenience is worth the risk.
    FBI. (n.d.). Face Recognition. Retrieved from FBI website: file:///C:/Users/Eric/Downloads/Face%20Recognition.pdf
    What is facial recognition? – Definition from (n.d.). Retrieved from

  22. Joane L October 14, 2017 at 8:58 pm #

    The article mentions that the face recognition technology from Apple has the ability to recognize a real face from photographs and masks. I find this very interesting, but not convincing. It is easier than ever for people to alter their looks with the advanced surgery and even make up. Although the issue at hand is about privacy, but on a health perspective, with cancer ravaging a large portion of the population. How safe can we say this functionality is when it comes to the exposure of A11 bionic? To briefly define this device, based on ARM core technology, has some of the most potent silicon integration. Apple’s responsibility is to also explain to its consumers how exactly this new technology may or may not effect their well-being. Since, we are talking about exposing our eyes, and every tissue that covers the face to unlock a CELL phone. Phones are part of daily activities, we use them for everything, browsing, communicating, capturing etc. Meaning, constant need there will be constant needs to unlock the phone in order to use it.
    As far as a safety concern, I believe this is the last straw in the technology field to completely deprave us of any piece of privacy we may have left. With voice recognition (SIRI) and location activated software, etc., we have been giving away our privacy to these technology guru in order to trend with the latest phones on the market. If you’ve ever noticed, whatever you browse on your phone appears also on every social media accounts ads, because all of your info are linked together to better service the government. On one hand, I find it helpful since it makes easier to trace criminals and give them the proper judgement. On the other hand, it also makes it easier for criminals (i.e hackers) to find us and cause damage to our privacy.

  23. Shannon Britton October 16, 2017 at 12:29 pm #

    The majority of people have an Apple iPhone these days and most of these people cannot wait to get their hands on the next generation of iPhones. The new iPhone X, in my opinion is not necessarily scary, however it is introducing the world to what the future holds for technology. An iPhone with facial recognition brings the iPhone to a whole different level of conveinience. In this day and age with the world revolving around technology, there are greater threats to people and their private information. Apple insists that this new feature of the iPhone X, will protect consumers even more than they already are.
    However, are consumers of the new iPhone actually safe? The big question that continues to come up is will the facial recognition technology be protected and secured from central databases and other cyberspace threats? Many people are hesitant to accept this concern. After hearing that the camera app will always be on to ensure proper facial recognition, it leads me to be a little weary myself. This means that your phone can see you even when you are not using it. This new feature can also be used to identify people who are walking around you.
    In conclusion, the main concern of this new iPhone from Apple is the lack of privacy. In my opinion, I feel that this new feature can be enjoyed by consumers but, Apple needs to give them more reassurance regarding their privacy. As a result of how much we trust and depend on our phones in our daily lives, people need to know that their information is safe. We rely so much on our devices that most consumers will not chance a breach of some sort.

  24. CS November 11, 2017 at 3:43 pm #

    The concept of facial recognition technology is not something too new. If my memory serves, I have been seeing facial recognition technology at work as long as laptops had cameras, and even before that. However, I have never seen a company try to apply it on such a large scale. Underdeveloped facial recognition software on a five year old laptop is one thing, but on a phone that almost everyone has on them at all times? That is something else. Not only can they track people’s cell phones, but now they can track people. Without facial recognition really anyone could get into your phone that knew your passcode. However, with facial recognition, only that one person with that one face can unlock their IPhone. Subsequently, if Apple is able to know every time someone unlocks their phone, they could track that specific person wherever they are. This leads to my next point, privacy.
    Apple is famous for how they approach consumer privacy, they take it very seriously. A customer’s IPhone and the information on it is their own. Apple even said that the facial recognition data will be stored locally on the IPhone. However, I think with Apple becoming so personally ingrained into people’s lives, eventually their going to have to reconsider their consumer privacy policies. Eventually there is going to be that one criminal case where Apple will be forced to hand over private information. I can imagine it would be some sort of terrorist attack where the only way to prevent another one would be to get information off of one of the perpetrators. Public outcry would be so overwhelming that Apple would have to give in.

  25. D.S. February 4, 2018 at 6:56 pm #

    Each and every year, tech companies around the world try to outdo one another with state-of-the-art technology built into their smart devices. In 2017, Apple added face recognition to the iPhone with the addition of the iPhone X (Pronounced “iPhone Ten”). While Apple was not the first company to include facial recognition, the company pushed the envelope as to what can be done with a smartphone.

    While many may question the legality and the potential for “spying”, it important to remember than facial recognition has been used in smart phones and tablets for years. Google first unveiled “face unlock”, with Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) back in 2012. All android phones, and tablets have had a “face unlock” feature in them since then. So facial recognition is hardly new when it comes to smartphones.

    Secondly, the article states that facial recognition is less secure and may lead to security issues in the future. I don’t agree. As Google required with Android devices, Apple forces users to have a backup pin in order to unlock the device. If a user wants to have an ultra-secure device, they don’t have to use the facial recognition (dubbed “Face ID”). Instead of using “Face ID”, users can resort to using a numerical pin or letter/number combination password.

    Lastly, the article talks about the possibility of the facial recognition technology being accessible to developers of 3rd part apps and games. Apple is a company that focuses heavily on privacy and has stated that “Face ID” is stored locally on the device and is highly encrypted.

  26. Caroline Jean Philippe March 2, 2018 at 7:47 pm #

    Phone companies seem to be constantly changing the way that phones are unlocked. I think that since phones are always being stolen phone companies are trying to make phone accessibility harder to achieve because when a thief steals a phone they have the ability to steal important information from people. I do not think that face recognition is a bad thing it is just another way of entering a password into a device.
    I can understand how some people facial recognition as an invasion of privacy. During facial recognition a phone is assessing all of your facial characteristics. The iPhone is essentially taking your photo every time you get into your phone and is essentially recording as well. Facial recognition will probably not blossom as much as how people think it would because people facial features can change over time. Objects like Alexa and this new feature seem to be invading little bit because they really infringe on people.
    I personally think that apple makes really good products because they are stylish and innovative. Since the Fifth Amendment does protect against the act of incriminating oneself or exposing oneself to prosecution, especially by giving evidence or testimony maybe the people who are using this phone would become less likely to commit crimes because the new phone feature constantly records.
    Facial recognition is not much different from touch id which is used at many facilities and in many other electronics. People who are not comfortable with the idea of having facial recognition on their phones for privacy purposes should not purchase the iPhone x.
    The iPhone X allows people to disable the feature. I do not think that facial recognition is a problem or a threat to people’s privacy.

  27. Ryan Mack March 2, 2018 at 8:58 pm #

    As time goes on, we are always introduced to new technologies that change the way we live and the ways things are done. Often times, it doesn’t fit within the current regulation or standard of things and society has to figure out how to adapt to it, improve it, and ultimately use it. This is evident with technology capable of reading biometrics to unlock devices. When Apple released Touch ID on the iPhone 5S in 2013, there were concerns of whether the technology was accurate, and whether the NSA or government, or even if Apple collected it and shared it with other companies. The same questions go for Face ID, which replaced touch ID on the iPhone X unveiled in 2017. Touch ID 2.0 was released with the iPhone 6S in 2015 and works faster and more accurate and secure. Face ID is the most secure, using 30,000 infrared dots coming from a dot projector and an infrared camera to take a picture of your face with the dots to create a very detailed map of your face. So the security of your phone is answered, but what about the other implications? Questions concerning their subjectivity to search warrants, and mass surveillance remain unknown. Also questions arise over virtual assistants like Siri, which can have an always-on nature, as to whether they can be used to spy on conversations, since a device’s microphone is always on waiting patiently for its wake word or phrase. The ACLU brings up several good points on the implications of Face ID and face recognition technology including whether the technology can be utilized by other apps and companies and how advertising reliant companies like Google and Facebook may not embrace the same privacy policies Apple has. For example, research done by Carnegie Mellon showed that some companies might be able to pair face recognition with social media to develop apps that can identify people walking around in public. Other points of concern brought up is if it is protected by law enforcement needing a search warrant to gain access to a device using facial recognition and if other apps can have access to the camera and face ID technology even if a user turned it off. As time goes on, society will always have to adapt to the new advances and figure out how to properly use and apply it, just as author Bhu Srinivasan used the analogy of operating systems needing to change as the hardware changes.

  28. Kayla Washington March 30, 2018 at 1:58 pm #

    Technological advancement has made a significant impact on the world and will continue to do so. This can be seen in Apple’s use of face recognition in the new iPhone X. And, while many Apple users are excited to begin using this hi-tech device to see all the benefits that come with this new iPhone capability, I am hesitant due to seeing the negative impact it can and will have on societies soon. You see, although the ACLU National organization emphasizes a strong prediction that the facial recognition is more than likely going to be a success, it was stated that “some of the first-order privacy implications of Apple’s new deployment can be overblown” (ACLU 3). Concerns of people’s personal information being leaked to law enforcement, having users vulnerable to becoming profiled, or even being under constant surveillance, increases feelings of paranoia which is a likely result to this new iPhone capability.

    Moreover, Apple’s launch of face recognition is concerning because of their expectancy to socialize Americans for the acceptance of being recorded as a normal thing. In other words, Apple is trying to make others get comfortable with being watched because that is what we are heading towards as a nation. Yet, comfort levels seem to have dropped with the masses due to the high chances of their personal data getting into the wrong hands and being leaked. The ACLU organization states that, “there is no case law on whether a person’s facial imprint is protected under a probable cause warrant standard and…the warrant requirements doesn’t apply to certain other data”(ACLU) Furthermore, if the facial recognition is enabled, it basically implies that the camera is always on, giving the government open access and an opportunity to store vital information without the proper consent. The Apple incorporation website states that “The probability that a random person in the population could look at your iPhone X and unlock it using Face ID is approximately 1 in 1,000,000 (versus 1 in 50,000 for Touch ID). As an additional protection, Face ID allows only five unsuccessful match attempts before a passcode is required” (Apple Inc. Safety Safeguards). However, with all of this, expert still say that the probability of having these protections broken in is evitable and you are still at risk of having your data tampered with.

    In closing, “some courts have ruled that if law enforcement has a warrant to search your phone, they can require you to provide your fingerprints to search your phone, they can require you to provide your fingerprint to open it up” (ACLU). That gives opportunity for the courts to see the face prints, fingerprints, and basically one’s identity. Furthermore, even though Apple is pushing the feature of facial recognition and have users blindly following the company, many, like myself, will stop to question and see how far this slightly imposing feature will go. Valuable information could slip into the wrong hands, whether it be government, or hackers. All in all, the most important thing to keep in mind, is that you think twice before you use a device that requires your personal data.


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