The U.S. Commerce Department added Israel’s NSO Group and Candiru to its trade blacklist. The Department said they trafficked in cyber tools used to gain unauthorized access to computer networks.
This move came after the Biden administration determined that the NSO’s phone hacking tools had been used by foreign governments to “maliciously target government officials, journalists, businesspeople, activists, academics, and embassy workers.”
In the past, the NSO Group and Candiru have been accused of selling hacking tools to authoritarian regimes. NSO says it only sells its products to law enforcement and intelligence agencies and takes steps to curb abuse.
Facebook will shut down its face-recognition system and delete the faceprints of more than 1 billion people amid growing concerns about the technology and its misuse by governments.
The removal of face recognition by the world’s largest social media platform comes as the tech industry has faced a reckoning over the past few years over the ethics of using the technology.
Critics say facial recognition technology, which is popular among retailers, hospitals and other businesses for security purposes – could compromise privacy, target marginalized groups and normalize intrusive surveillance.