Biometrics refers to the use of analytical tools and devices which capture, record and/or process people’s physical or behavioural data. This can include faces (commonly known as facial recognition), fingerprints, DNA, irises, walking style (gait), voice as well as other characteristics. Under the EU’s data protection laws, this biometric data is especially sensitive. It is linked to our individual identities, and can also reveal protected and intimate information about who we are, where we go, our health status and more. When used to indiscriminately target people in public spaces, to predict behaviours and emotions, or in situations of imbalances of power, biometric surveillance such as facial recognition has been shown to violate a wide range of fundamental rights.

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