Facebook users in Europe are reporting the company has begun testing its controversial facial recognition technology in the region. Jimmy Nsubuga, a journalist at Metro, is among several European Facebook users who have said they’ve been notified by the company they are in its test bucket. The company has previously said an opt-in option for facial recognition will be pushed out to all European users next month. It’s hoping to convince Europeans to voluntarily allow it to expand its use of the privacy-hostile tech — which was turned off in the bloc after regulatory pressure, back in 2012, when Facebook was using it for features such as automatically tagging users in photo uploads. Under impending changes to its T&Cs — ostensibly to comply with the EU’s incoming GDPR data protection standard — the company has crafted a manipulative consent flow that tries to sell people on giving it their data; including filling in its own facial recognition blanks by convincing Europeans to agree to it grabbing and using their biometric data after all.  Notably Facebook is not offering a voluntary opt-in to Europeans who find themselves in its facial recognition test bucket. Rather users are being automatically turned into its lab rats — and have to actively delve into the settings to say no. In a notification to affected users, the company writes [emphasis ours]: “You control face recognition. This setting is on, but you can turn it off at any time, which applies to features we may add later.” Not only is the tech turned on, but users who click through to the settings to try and turn it off will also find Facebook attempting to dissuade them from doing that — with manipulative examples of how the tech can “protect” them. As another Facebook user who found herself enrolled in the test — journalist Jennifer Baker — points out, what it’s doing here is incredibly disingenuous because it’s using fear to try to manipulate people’s choices. Sure #Facebook, I'll take a milisecond to consider whether you want me to enable #facialrecognition for my own protection or your #data #tracking business model. #Disingenuous pricks! pic.twitter.com/s7nngaHVSq — Jennifer Baker (@BrusselsGeek) April 20, 2018 https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js Under the EU’s incoming data protection framework Facebook will not be able to automatically opt users into facial recognition — it will have to convince people to switch the tech on themselves. But the experiment it’s running here (without gaining…

Source: TechCrunch – Social Facebook has auto-enrolled users into a facial recognition test in Europe