"AI technology should never undermine citizens’ rights to privacy", says Ismail Ertug MEP

Reacting to the European Commission’s proposal for new regulations in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Socialists and Democrats (S&D) in the European Parliament are calling for legislation every bit as groundbreaking as the regulation on Data Protection (GDPR), in particular when it comes to facial recognition in public spaces.

Ismail Ertug MEP, S&D vice-president in charge of digitalisation, said: “AI is the key technology to revolutionise the mobility sector. Autonomous vehicles, Real-time railway system optimisation or fuel planning - we need AI to master the transition to a safe, inclusive environmentally-friendly mobility. It will reduce traffic, accidents, and pollution.

“The European Commission addressed the growing importance by defining high-risk applications. Clear responsibility and liability will help consumers gain trust in the use of AI and will harmonise the rules for deployment in the European market. What the proposal lacks is bans on the harmful use for the military and biometric facial recognition. AI technology should never undermine citizens’ rights to privacy, particularly when it comes to facial recognition rules. AI should never lead to mass surveillance or discrimination, and we need to ban any applications that would lead to it. We must stop using facial recognition systems until we are sure they are fully compliant with fundamental rights standards. If we want the AI regulation to become another European success story like the GDPR, we need clear rules that work for all.”

Image: European Parliament.

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Martin Banks

Martin Banks

Martin Banks is a highly qualified journalist with many years experience of working within the EU institutions. He is an occasional, and highly valued, contributor to EU today, writing on a wide variety of issues.

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