Accession Number:



Facial Recognition Technology: Commercial Uses, Privacy Issues, and Applicable Federal Law

Descriptive Note:

[Technical Report, Congressional Report]

Corporate Author:

United States Government Accountability Office

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



Facial recognition technology can be used in numerous consumer and business applications, but the extent of its current use in commercial settings is not fully known. The technology is commonly used in software that manages personal photographs and in social networking applications to identify friends. In addition, several companies use the technology to provide secure access to computers, phones, and gaming systems in lieu of a password. Facial recognition technology can have applications for customer service and marketing, but at present, use in the United States of the technology for such purposes appears to be largely for detecting characteristics such as age or gender to tailor digital advertising, rather than identifying unique individuals. Some security systems serving retailers, banks, and casinos incorporate facial recognition technology, but the extent of such use at present is not fully known.

Subject Categories:

  • Government and Political Science
  • Sociology and Law

Distribution Statement:

[A, Approved For Public Release]