Facebook Inc announced on Tuesday it is shutting down its facial recognition system, which automatically identifies users in photos and videos, citing growing societal concerns about the use of such technology.
"Regulators are still in the process of providing a clear set of rules governing its use," Jerome Pesenti, vice president of artificial intelligence at Facebook, wrote in a blog post. "Amid this ongoing uncertainty, we believe that limiting the use of facial recognition to a narrow set of use cases is appropriate."
The removal of face recognition by the world's largest social media platform comes as the tech industry has faced a reckoning over the past few years over the ethics of using the technology.
Critics say facial recognition technology - which is popular among retailers, hospitals and other businesses for security purposes - could compromise privacy, target marginalized groups and normalize intrusive surveillance.
The news also comes as Facebook has been under intense scrutiny from regulators and lawmakers over user safety and a wide range of abuses on its platforms.