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China: CAC requests comments on draft FRT regulations

On August 8, 2023, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) released the Regulations on the Safety Management of Facial Recognition Technology Application (Trial Implementation) (Draft for Comment) and is requesting public comments on the same. The draft regulations confirm that they have been drafted in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law, the Data Security Law, and the Personal Information Protection Law, among other legislation.


The draft regulations apply to the use of facial recognition technology (FRT) to process facial information within the territory of the People's Republic of China and FRT products or services. Importantly, the draft regulations clarify that where laws and administrative regulations provide otherwise, those provisions shall prevail.


The draft regulations establish rules regarding the use of FRT, including that the use of the same to process facial information requires an individual's separate or written consent in accordance with the law, unless exceptions apply. In addition, the draft regulations impose specific restrictions on the installation of such technologies, among other things, the location and purpose of use, and by whom such technology can be used.


Users of FRT that process facial information must assess the impact on personal information protection in advance, record the processing, conduct annual inspections and assessments of the security and possible risks, and improve security strategies based on the inspections and assessments, among other things. Furthermore, users of FRT in public places, or who store facial information of more than 10,000 people, must file a record with the CAC at or above the municipal level within 30 working days.


Where the facial information of minors under the age of 14 is processed, users must obtain separate or written consent from the minor's parents or other guardians.

Public comments can be submitted via email to [email protected] until September 7, 2023.

You can read the press release and the draft regulations, only available in Chinese, here.