Getty Image

Privacy Concerns Arise As Australian Stadiums Use Facial Recognition Technology

Australian stadiums have come under scrutiny for using facial recognition technology without people’s knowledge or consent.

An investigation revealed that many venues use facial recognition technology without providing clear information on its usage and purpose. 

Stay up-to-date on the latest news with The National Briefing – keeping you in the loop with news as it hits:

One concern is related to the Qudos Bank Arena (Sydney), owned by Ticketek’s parent company TEG.

Qudos Bank Arena is a prominent venue with a capacity of up to 21,000 people and hosts numerous major events, including performances by international artists.

CHOICE consumer data advocate Kate Bower expressed concerns about the lack of transparency regarding the collection and use of facial recognition data by TEG.

“It is extremely concerning that FRT is being used at major concert and sporting venues across the country without any kind of clear information for consumers about where, how and why it is being used,” Ms Bower told Seven News.

“I think one of the main problems from a consumer’s perspective is that they don’t know when facial recognition is being used and then when they are told that it is being used, it’s very deep in some conditions of entry or privacy policy,” she said.

RELATED:   Jet Shares Untold Stories Behind 'Get Born', Fame, and Aussie Rock

Although Qudos claims to inform attendees about the use of facial recognition through digital signs and in its conditions of entry, consumer advocate groups argue that these signs are difficult to understand and often buried deep within privacy policies.

The signs also fail to provide details on how the information is stored, shared, or used.

In addition to stadiums, two major Australian retailers, Kmart and Bunnings, are currently being investigated by the privacy watchdog for their use of facial recognition technology in stores. 

“I think what we really need to see is a business being more transparent and leading by example, but we also need stronger regulators to be able to hold them to account and to actually give some clear guidelines about what is a safe and responsible use of this technology.”

Subscribe to The Briefing, Australia’s fastest-growing news podcast on Listnr today. The Briefing serves up the latest news headlines and a deep dive into a topic affecting you. All in under 20 minutes.