Letter Expressing Concerns With Proposed Boston Facial Recognition Ban

Letter to Boston City Council

In a June 10, 2020, letter to Boston City Council President Kim Janey, Don Erickson, CEO of the Security Industry Association (SIA), expressed SIA’s concerns with a proposed ordinance banning facial recognition technology in Boston, which would prohibit any city government official from leveraging facial recognition technology or any information obtained using the technology.

SIA believes all technology products must only be used for purposes that are lawful, ethical and nondiscriminatory. Facial recognition technology offers tremendous benefits to citizens when used effectively and responsibility. SIA believes that eliminating the potential benefits to Bostonians by completely banning its use is premature.

In the letter, Erickson outlines the proven and growing benefits of facial recognition technology and the high accuracy levels of modern facial recognition, addresses key misconceptions driving the justification for the proposed ordinance and urges the Boston City Council to reject the proposal in its current form and seek less extreme measures that address public concerns about facial recognition without putting public safety at risk.