Institutional investors sign investor statement on facial recognition

Several institutional investors are among a group of 50 global investors, representing more than USD 4.5trn in assets under management, to have become signatories to the Investor Statement on Facial Recognition.

The initiative by Candriam was launched in March this year to address the risks raised by facial recognition technology (FRT) products and services. Welcomed by the United Nations-supported Principles for Responsible Investment, the initiative invited investors to sign the Investor Statement on Facial Recognition and join Candriam in its engagement with companies on their FRT activities and human rights policies.

Over the coming months, the investor statement will form the basis of a dialogue with companies as part of an informed and constructive collaborative engagement programme. Candriam explained that FRT technology in its present form risks infringing on individual privacy rights given it lacks the consent of those being identified and has no official oversight. Misidentification is far more frequent than one might expect, occurs more systematically among certain ethnic groups and has led to false arrests.

Although there is no common global framwork around the regulation of biometric data collection and its use, several US cities and states have banned the use of FRT. In Europe, the EU Commission is proposing the first ever legal framework on Artificial Intelligence Regulation[2] and China recently published a draft standard on Security Requirements of Facial Recognition Data[3].

Despite the fact that the facial recognition market is a relatively small part of the technology market, US and China technology giants have developed their own facial recognition products and services. After mastering the collection and analysis of their users’ online behavioural data, these companies are now moving into the physical world. For those companies, their governmental or business clients, it is important to make sure FRT development and use is done in an ethical way, with the right regulation and oversight.

Among the signatories are KLP, RPMI Railpen, Church of England Pensions Board and the Local Authority Pension Fund Forum.

    Share Story:

Recent Stories


Podcast: The benefits of private equity in pension fund portfolios
The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, in which stock markets have seen increased volatility, combined with global low interest rates has led to alternative asset classes rising in popularity. Private equity is one of the top runners in this category, and for good reason.

In this podcast, Munich Private Equity Partners Managing Director, Christopher Bär, chats to European Pensions Editor, Natalie Tuck, about the benefits private equity investments can bring to pension fund portfolios and the best approach to take.

Podcast - The power of three: Using Common Contractual Funds to improve tax outcomes for investors
Large asset owners are still investing in equities in a way where they are taxed on their income. The implication is that they get a poorer return. They need to, and can, improve this, but how?

In this podcast, AMX Head of Client and Manager Development, Aaron Overy, and AMX Product Tax Specialist, Kevin Duggan, discuss with European Pensions Editor, Natalie Tuck, about three options to help ensure good withholding tax outcomes for institutional investors.
Mitigating risk
BNP Paribas Asset Management’s head of pension solutions, Julien Halfon, discusses equity hedging with Laura Blows

Europe’s pensions challenges
Francesca Fabrizi meets Matti Leppälä, Secretary General and CEO of PensionsEurope, to discuss the key aims and objectives of the association today.