Washington – Microsoft President Brad Smith warned about the threat posed by the ‘facial recognition technology’ saying, “Facial Recognition could be an encroachment on the fundamental rights of a person in our society. Extensive mass surveillance could be initiated using this technology. Also, no one can be sure that it would never happen. Hence, we all must unite and ensure that the year 2024 does not look like a page out of George Orwell’s novel ‘1984’.”
In the year 1949, renowned British author George Orwell published a novel named ‘1984′. The novel had a storyline depicting the events in the year 1984. The story illustrated that most of the world’s population was consistently facing a war-like situation and a totalitarian ruler was controlling the events through the propagation of fake information propaganda and mass surveillance. Deemed a classic internationally, the novel ‘1984′ has popularised the concepts like ‘Big Brother’, ‘2 + 2 = 5′ and many of the like throughout the world.
The reference to the novel made by the President of a leading information technology company like Microsoft is noteworthy. Microsoft President Brad Smith had mentioned the threats posed by the ‘Facial Recognition’ technology in an article on the company blog and has made two references to George Orwell’s ‘1984′ in it.
“On the strength of cameras covering most parts of the country, the immense capacities of computing along with the use of cloud storage, the government or state could keep continuous surveillance on any citizen. The technology could follow anyone, anywhere or for that matter everyone, everywhere. The use of facial-recognition technology could unleash mass surveillance on an unprecedented scale,’ Brad Smith said while exposing the risk to how the government or state may misuse the Facial Recognition technology.
While exposing this threat, he referred to George Orwell’s ‘1984′. The novel describes people using a sign language in a dark room to avoid government surveillance. Moreover, Orwell had expressed the fear 70 years ago. However, today, the Microsoft President has warned of Orwell’s fears turning into a reality with the current technological advancements.
Therefore, to avoid such a situation, Smith has called upon all the leading companies in the technology sector to unite and pressurise the government or state to pass laws regulating the use of the Facial Recognition technology.