Incident 109: PimEyes's Facial Recognition AI Allegedly Lacked Safeguards to Prevent Itself from Being Abused

Description: PimEyes offered its subscription-based AI service to anyone in the public to search for matching facial images across the internet, which critics said lacked public oversight and government rules to prevent itself from misuse such as stalking women.


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Alleged: PimEyes developed and deployed an AI system, which harmed internet users.

Incident Stats

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Sean McGregor, Khoa Lam

Incident Reports

This facial recognition website can turn anyone into a cop — or a stalker · 2021

PimEyes has become a hit among digital ‘creeps’ and others eager to investigate strangers. Researchers fear there’s no way to prevent it from being abused.

The facial recognition site PimEyes is one of the most capable face-searching tools …


A "variant" is an incident that shares the same causative factors, produces similar harms, and involves the same intelligent systems as a known AI incident. Rather than index variants as entirely separate incidents, we list variations of incidents under the first similar incident submitted to the database. Unlike other submission types to the incident database, variants are not required to have reporting in evidence external to the Incident Database. Learn more from the research paper.

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