Instagram has quietly disabled its filters for users in Texas, thanks to a lawsuit filed by Attorney General Ken Paxton, alleging that their facial recognition technology violated state law and residents’ privacy rights. has done.
In the lawsuit, Paxton claimed that Meta, Instagram’s parent company, “illegally captured Texans’ biometric identifiers for a commercial purpose without their informed consent, disclosed those identifiers to others and that information failed to destroy”.
The lawsuit was filed in February, and Meta, which also owns Facebook, said it stopped using facial recognition in November 2021.
But the company said in a statement this week, “The technology we use to power augmented reality effects such as avatars and filters is not facial recognition or any technology covered by Texas and Illinois laws, and It is not used to identify anyone.
“Nevertheless, we are taking this step to prevent unnecessary and distracting litigation under the laws in these two states about how our features work. We are committed to delivering AR. [augmented reality] Experience that people love, and that the diverse roster of creators use to grow their businesses without unnecessary friction or confusion.”
Meta explained that users can “expect to see an opt-in experience that explains how AR effect placement works” with plans to restart services in Texas.
There’s no word on when those Instagram filters will be available to Texas users again.