The government of China, to tighten the control on cyberspace, has insisted the telecom operators of the country collect the face scan of their new subscribers while registering at offline outlets.
In September, the information technology authority of China issued a notice to safeguard the legitimate interest and rights of its citizens in the cyber world that the mandatory face scan of phone users would come into effect from Dec 1, 2019. A customer service representative of China Unicom said that customers have to record face scans by turning their heads and blinking.
China has already used this technology of face recognition for the survey of the population. It is a legend for utilizing such technologies, and the telecom operators were told to artificial intelligence and other techniques for the verification of the user’s identity when they subscribe for a new phone number.
To ensure a real-name identification, the Chinese government has introduced the linking of people’s identity proofs and photographs while taking a new phone number. Now, to its extension, people also have to give their face scans. The face recognition is gaining traction since this technology can be used for everything right from the supermarket checkouts to the surveillance.
There is a mixed reaction among people for this face recognition technology when researchers have warned about the privacy risks involved in providing face scans. One tweeting “This is a bit too much” on Twitter and the other commenting “Control, and then more control” on an article about the new rules of face scans in Weibo.
A Chinese Professor has filed a lawsuit against a safari park in Hangzhou, eastern Zhejiang province, for asking face scans for entry into the park. In 2012, the social media website of China, Weibo was required to roll out the real-name registration.
Constrictions by the Chinese government on the use of the internet have raised over the years to promote the orderly and healthy spread of the internet and to protect the public interest and state security.