March 27, 2016 -
Here is a recap of the most popular biometrics industry news that appeared on BiometricUpdate.com this past week.
BMO Financial Group and MasterCard began a phased roll-out this week of a biometric corporate credit card program in Canada and the U.S. that will let cardholders verify online transactions using facial recognition and fingerprint biometrics. The first phase will test the potential of delivering cardholders greater security and convenience, including establishing and improving best practices in corporate environments, developing better protection against potential fraud and reducing the need for customer service inquiries.
Neat is a mobile banking startup based in Hong Kong that blends biometric security with machine intelligence. Neat operates as mobile banking app with a companion card and uses facial recognition technology to authenticate customers at log-in. The company plans to apply AI technology to user payment data, creating distinct behavioural clusters combined with geo-location to offer personalized and local promotions to users.
The Department of Home Affairs’ partnership with the South African banking industry is helping to save millions of dollars in fraud and loss prevention through the implementation of biometrics. The partnership gives banks access to the Home Affairs National Identification System (HANIS) to authorize the identities of both existing and prospective clients. The national ID database uses fingerprint biometrics to facilitate the secure identification of all South African citizens.
According to reports, Chinese smartphone vendors are expected to ship 200 to 300 million fingerprint recognition enabled smartphones in 2016. The increasing adoption of fingerprint recognition functionality for mid-range and high-end devices are driving the market, partly due to China-based mobile payment service providers getting ready to go head to head with Apple Pay.
Fingerprint Cards (FPC) and Precise Biometrics are providing the fingerprint technology for a newly established Chinese smartphone brand, 360. The 360 group owns the Qiku and Dazen brands and is now unifying them under the “360” brand. 360’s new smartphone model, the F4, features the rear-mounted FPC One Touch fingerprint sensor FPC1035 and Precise BioMatch Mobile software.
Bangladeshi mobile operator Grameenphone says that over 23 million customers in its network have successfully completed the biometric verification process, according to the new guidelines set out by the BTRC. Last year, the government ordered the biometric registration in the face of mounting complaints of fake and unregistered SIM cards being used for criminal activities.
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) will convene a meeting of organizations involved in the privacy multi-stakeholder process focused on the commercial use of facial recognition technology on March 29. Stakeholders have been engaged in a consensus-driven process to develop a code of conduct regarding facial recognition technology and a preliminary draft of the code will be presented at this meeting.
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are seeking to expand its automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS) to include facial recognition capabilities. In a recent letter of interest, the law enforcement agency said that it would also like to add capacity to its biometric database to store and analyze surveillance and cellphone video, along with video from other non-controlled, poor-quality sources.
Vision-Box revealed this week that it has been providing the core biometric technology, its vb e-pass desktop, as part of a facial recognition solution provided to CBP by Unisys Corporation that is deployed at JFK airport. The system authenticates electronic passports through biometric matching of a traveler’s face with the facial image stored on the identification document’s e-chip. This deployment follows the successful testing of the same system at Washington’s Dulles International Airport.
The General Directorate for National Security (DGSN) for the Kingdom of Morocco has selected Veridos to design and implement a national border control system for all ports of entry, including the entire IT infrastructure necessary for the project. Veridos will provide stationary equipment for fixed border posts and mobile systems for border control at land, sea and airports.
The Japanese government will start using a facial recognition system at airports to strengthen its ability to catch terrorists and identify criminals or undesirables trying to sneak into the country. According to reports, the Justice Ministry asked for 300 million yen ($2.7M USD) in its fiscal 2016 budget to install the system at all immigration sections at airports nationwide.
Turkish authorities have started distribution of its new biometric identity cards and have selected Kirikkale as the pilot province for this new program. The new biometric identity cards will be valid for ten years and contains a chip that, according to the country’s Electronic Authentication System website, can hold up to 1 GB of information, including the user’s finger and palm prints.
A legal adviser to the Israeli Biometric Database Management Authority acknowledged this week that the potential for database breaches of the country’s experimental biometric identity database couldn’t be ruled out, but that it was not a pressing concern. The head of the Authority said this week that 935,000 Israelis have voluntarily joined the national database and that 1.5 million digital identity cards and electronic passports have been issued.
The growing need to deliver identity verification and access control in areas of high activity, along with an increasing emphasis on health and hygiene, will drive the adoption of contactless biometrics solutions. According to reports, contactless biometric solutions such as 3D facial recognition scanners, iris recognition scanners and contactless fingerprint scanners are on the verge of monopolizing new biometrics implementations.
A new market analyst report forecasts that the global biometrics market will exceed $30 billion by 2021, representing a 118% increase from 2015. The report finds that North America and the Asia-Pacific regions are currently dominating the majority of the biometrics market share, however, analysts predict that Latin America and the Middle East will undergo a boom in terms of new biometric implementations, which will primarily occur in banking and personal finance, followed by the governmental and security sectors.
Cloud computing has become an emerging offering in the biometrics industry, and according to Frank Barret, Director of Cloud Services at MorphoTrak, LLC, enables a new service paradigm known as “identification-as-a-service”. In an interview with Biometric Update, Barret discusses MorphoTrak’s own identification-as-a-service solution entitled Morpho Cloud.