Microsoft has reportedly deleted a huge facial recognition database.

Microsoft

Microsoft

The tech giant is said to have made the collection of 10 million images - which was released in 2016 and used online images of around 100,000 well known people - unavailable now, after using it as training for a system which was operated by military and police forces.

As reported by the Financial Times, Microsoft has claimed the MS Celeb data set was retired "because the research challenge is over".

Meanwhile, late last year the company said it turned down a facial recognition request from law enforcement in California.

The tech giant - which didn't name the law force in question - has said it snubbed the query regarding using its technology in police body cameras and cars.

At the time, Microsoft president Brad Smith explained that there were concerns the use of the facial recognition software would disproportionately affect minorities and women.

In the past, research has shown that with the technology being trained primarily on white and male face, other individuals carried a higher error rate.

Smith said: "Anytime they pulled anyone over, they wanted to run a face scan. We said this technology is not your answer."