A civil rights activist expressed joy after the appellate court ruled that police's use of facial recognition technology violated privacy and privacy laws.
Ed Bridges filed a legal lawsuit against South Wales Police, arguing that the use of automatic facial recognition (AFR) had caused him "distress".
The 37-year-old had his face scanned in 2017 while shopping for Christmas in Cardiff and at a peaceful anti-weapons protest outside the city's Motorpoint Arena in 2018.
In a ruling on Tuesday, three appeals court judges ruled that the use of the technology was unlawful and allowed Mr. Bridges to appeal on three of the five reasons he put forward in his case.
The ruling does not prevent the armed forces from using the technology, but rather means they must make changes to the systems and policies they use for AFR.
In a statement, Mr Bridges said he was "pleased" that the court found that "facial recognition clearly threatens our rights".
He said, “This technology is an intrusive and discriminatory mass surveillance tool.
“For the past three years the South Wales Police have used them against hundreds of thousands of us, without our consent and often without our knowledge. We should all be able to use our public space without being subjected to oppressive surveillance. "
South Wales Police said the judicial test of their "groundbreaking use of the technology" was a "welcome and important step in its development" and the force would be paying "serious attention" to the results.
Chief Constable Matt Jukes said, “The Court of Appeal's ruling helpfully indicates a limited number of policy areas that require this attention.
"Our guidelines have already evolved since the court cases were examined by the courts in 2017 and 2018. We are currently discussing with the Home Office and the CCTV officer what further adjustments we should make and any other actions that should be taken . "
Mr. Jukes added, “We are pleased that the court recognized that there was no evidence of bias or discrimination in the use of the technology.
"However, issues of public trust, fairness and transparency are vital and the appeals court understands that further work is needed to ensure that there is no risk of us violating our equality obligations. "
The force does not intend to appeal the judgment.
Face recognition technology is also used by the Metropolitan Police.
Mr Bridges' case was dismissed in the High Court last September by two senior judges who concluded that the use of the technology was not unlawful.
Mr Bridges, who the troop confirmed was not a person of interest and was never on a watchlist, crowdfunded his legal action and is supported by civil rights organization Liberty, which advocates banning the technology.
Megan Goulding, a Liberty attorney, said, "This ruling is a great victory in the fight against discriminatory and oppressive facial recognition."