Everalbum personal facial data harvesting
Occurred: August 2020
In August 2020, NBC News reported that cloud photo storage app Ever is using its users' photographs to train its facial recognition technology (FRT) system without informing them or letting them turn the system off.
Furthermore, the report discovered that Ever was selling its FRT system to companies, police, and military customers.
The report sparked multiple privacy and civil rights organisations to accuse Ever of egregious privacy abuse and opaque and misleading marketing, and to a wave of complaints by its users.
The furore also prompted a January 2021 complaint (pdf) by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which was settled (pdf) in May 2021, with Ever instructed to all user data harvested from its app and to delete 'any models or algorithms developed in whole or in part' using that data.
Purpose: Train facial recognition system
Technology: Facial recognition
Transparency: Governance; Privacy; Marketing