Activist Alyona Popova and politician Vladimir Milov have lodged a complaint to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) about Russia’s use of facial recognition technology.
The lawsuit is the first laid before the court challenging use of the technology for mass surveillance, according to Human Rights Watch, citing Popova’s and Milov’s lawyer, Kirill Koroteyev.
The case follows a protest in Moscow attended by more than 20,000 people last September. Attendees Popova and Milov say all participants had to pass through metal detectors equipped with CCTV cameras installed at eye level.
In March a Russian court dismissed the pair’s complaint about Moscow authorities using facial recognition technology to gather data about protestors, saying the government acted legally.
But Popova and Milov argue in their ECHR filing that collection of protesters’ biometric data through facial recognition technology violates the right to privacy and freedom of assembly, as protected under the European Convention on Human Rights.
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