Taylor Swift event uses secret facial recognition

Fans at pop star's show in California's Rose Bowl had their faces scanned by hidden camera at kiosk.

Image credit: instagram.com/taylorswift
Image credit: instagram.com/taylorswift

The use of facial recognition technology has been a subject of debate for some time in the MICE industry, but it was recently revealed that fans of pop star Taylor Swift unknowingly had their faces scanned at a California Rose Bowl concert in May.

Security organisers said the facial recognition technology was being used to look for Swift’s "known stalkers".

According to Rolling Stone, the facial recognition cameras were hidden in a kiosk showing video clips of Swift’s rehearsals and the images were sent to a security command post in Nashville.

"Everybody who went by would stop and stare at it, and the software would start working," said Mike Downing, chief security officer of Oak View Group, an advisory board for concert venues.

Earlier this year, Banks Sadler's head of event solutions, Mark Scales, asked whether the technology opens up hyper-personal experiences or could become a privacy nightmare.

He said: "The software is already being used in China as an almost constant surveillance device, helping to eliminate crime and give their government a high level of control over people’s lives."

Permission for the use of facial scanning technology at Swift’s concert was not needed under US law because it was a private event.

For more features and breaking news sign up to C&IT Magazine's daily Newstracker here.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Register now
Already registered?
Sign in
Why should events be sustainable?

Why should events be sustainable?

A panel of event professionals at the C&IT Corporate Forum discussed the issues surrounding sustainability.

5 macro-trends that could disrupt the MICE industry

5 macro-trends that could disrupt the MICE industry

PCMA report suggests biodegradable, 3D-printed meeting spaces could be part of the industry's future.

C&IT launches top incentive agency survey

C&IT launches top incentive agency survey

This year's State of the Industry: Incentives Report will include the Top 20 Incentive Agencies in the UK.

FIRST appoints chief people officer

FIRST appoints chief people officer

In the newly created role, Jeanelle R. Beach will oversee the People & Culture Team for all FIRST global offices.

The rise of rooftop venues

The rise of rooftop venues

More and more rooftop spaces are popping up in exciting locations around the world, says Tobacco Dock's Jonathan Read.

Profit warning issued by Ryanair

Profit warning issued by Ryanair

Airline reduces profit expectations by £88m, blaming drop in fares caused by competition during winter.

'Waste can be reduced if the client, organisers and caterer work together'

'Waste can be reduced if the client, organisers and caterer work together'

Allan Heard from 30 Euston Square explains how both food and other forms of waste can be tackled through closer collaboration.

Robots don't always make the best staff

Robots don't always make the best staff

The Henn na Hotel in Japan is 'firing' its robot staff after they failed to reduce costs or workload for employees.

Overcoming event preconceptions

Overcoming event preconceptions

Why event planners should reconsider their initial thoughts about different venues, brands and destinations.

If an event manager had overseen Brexit...

If an event manager had overseen Brexit...

'I can't help but think we'd be in a better place than the one we're in now,' says Alex Hewitt, CEO of AOK Events.

LATEST JOBS