Google is a massive organization with abundant resources at their disposal. There are a large number of employees who work for Google and can help them in their new projects. Despite this, Google is asking random people for their face data, reportedly, to train its upcoming smartphone – Pixel 4.
As originally reported by a ZDNet writer, officials from Google approached his friend when he was sitting around in New York and asked him to register his facial data on a “phone in a very large case”.
There are some speculations that the device used by Googlers to register face data of George was ‘Pixel 4’ and the tech giant is trying to train its AI model.
After registering the face data and signing the waiver, Google employees offered a $5 gift card to Amazon or Starbucks for “5 minutes of me interacting with the phone,” says George.
Interestingly, George did not even care to read the full waiver he signed in exchange for his facial data.
When he asked the Googlers whether it was the only team collecting the data, they said there have other teams in many cities collecting data from random people.
According to XDA Developers, George isn’t the only one who has reported the incident. A Redditor going by the username “oheightthirtytwo” also said that employees from Google approached him and asked him to scan his face data on a device for a $5 gift card.
It is unusual as we’ve never seen Google doing something like this before. Nonetheless, selling your facial data for $5 is a red flag when it comes to privacy. We don’t know the exact motive behind Google’s personal touch in its data collection programme, but we expect that the company will ensure it is not misused in any manner.