Walmart is commencing facial recognition of customers in order to target advertising and pricing using photographic data from Facebook. This probably isn’t a surprise to Facebook users that actual read the terms and conditions when signing up or when they agreed to updates of the terms.
Once the systems roll out Facebook information will be used from profile photos and also tags where people have identified you.
In addition to targeted advertising in store and eventual price changes based on the customer’s value/worth; Facebook will in turn use your Walmart shopping statistics for advertising on the social network.
What will this mean? You can expect advertising targeted at you when you enter the store via video and audio messages. Also staff may approach you with a new product knowing that you will be interested based on data collected, this is just the start, with price adjustment based your income and dependence on a product, just like you might see price adjustment online when shopping.
There will be no opting out of the facial recognition when in the store, all people will be captured and recorded in the database, so if they don’t know who you are when you go in the store... the day you put a photo of yourself on Facebook, or somebody else does you will be known to Walmart.
Workers will eventually be replaced by machines too, but that is another story.
How to protect yourself if you care about your privacy:
- Wear a hat and sunglasses.
- As always pay cash if possible (credit/ debit card will be tied in the future.)
- Know your rights as a consumer
- Shop somewhere else, literally anywhere else.
- Ask people to kindly not put photos of you on Facebook.
- Don’t use Facebook, if people don’t want to keep in contact in real life, then they are not a friend.
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