HRT Transgender dataset uses YouTubers' data without consent

Occurred: July 2022

A dataset supposedly meant to help protect against terrorism caused controversy for scraping the data of YouTube users without permission and exposing their data for years.

Karl Ricanek, a professor of computer science at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, claimed his HRT Transgender dataset was developed to protect against the possibility of terrorists using Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) to avoid facial recognition and sneak across borders undetected, and that he had gained the permission of people whose data had been used. 

However, a July 2022 peer-reviewed audit of the project's background and practices by researchers Os Keyes and Jeanie Austin took issue with a number of Ricanek's practices and claims, including:

The fracas was seen to highlight the need for the consent of users whose data is used in datasets, and for meaningful transparency in the governance of datasets.

Developer: University of North Carolina, Wilmington (UNCW)
Country: USA
Sector: Research/academia; Technology
Purpose: Identify HRT users
Technology: Database/dataset; Facial recognition; Computer vision
Issue: Bias/discrimination - LGBTQ; Ethics/values; Privacy
Transparency: Governance; Privacy

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