A recently published report in a U.S.-based magazine says Iran is likely using facial recognition technology to monitor women’s compliance with the country’s hijab law.
While there are other ways people can be identified, Wired magazine says Iran’s apparent use of facial recognition technology against women is “perhaps the first known instance of a government using face recognition to impose dress law on women based on religious belief.”
Iran announced late last year that it would begin to use recognition technology to monitor its women.
Wired said that since the protests that have erupted across Iran following the death of a young women who was arrested for wearing her headscarf improperly, Iranian women are reporting that they are being arrested for hijab infractions a day or two after attending protests, even though they had no interaction with police during the protests.
Tiandy, a Chinese company blacklisted by the U.S., is a likely provider of facial recognition technology to Iran, although neither it nor Iranian officials responded to a request for comment from Wired.
The company has in the past listed the Iran Revolutionary Guard Corp and other Iranian police and government agencies as customers. Tiandy also boasted on its website that its technology has helped China identify the country’s ethnic minorities, including Uyghurs.