FB pixel

NIST, University of Texas researchers say there’s more to image-based biometric recognition than faces alone

 

A new study published in the journal of Psychological Science by researchers at the University of Texas at Dallas and the National Institute of Standards and Technologies could turn our understanding of facial recognition on its head.

The research describes a series of experiments that demonstrates there is potentially more information for biometrics-based identity recognition in images of people than the face alone. Specifically, the recognition study used three types of images for comparison: a subject’s face and upper body (left); only the face (center); and the upper body with the face masked (right). Results suggest that automatic recognition systems could be improved by adding body information beyond the face.

“For twenty years, the assumption in the automatic face recognition community has been that all important identity information is in the face,” Jonathon Phillips, an electronics engineer at NIST who is a co-author on the study said. “These results should point us toward exploring new ways to improve automatic recognition systems by incorporating information about the body beyond the face.”

In a series of experiments, the researchers showed study participants pairs of images of either the same or different people and asked them to determine if the photos matched or not. The images selected for the study were chosen from a database used in the NIST Face Recognition Vendor Test 2006, an international competition of face recognition systems conducted by NIST. The study team selected a subset of the image pairs that automated face recognition systems could not recognize.

The images included a subject’s face and upper body. The study found that biometric identification accuracy by humans was essentially random when viewing only the face. Study participants were presented with two additional cases. In the first case, they compared the original images containing the face and upper body; while in the second case, they compared images of the upper body with the face masked. In both cases, human accuracy was the same and above chance. These results showed that participants primarily made decisions based on the upper body.

Participants also reported using facial cues to make identifications. Eye-movement tracking of the study participants, however, told a different story.

“Eye movements revealed a highly efficient and adaptive strategy for finding the most useful identity information in any given image of a person,” the study’s lead author Alice O’Toole of the University of Texas said.

According to NIST, The eye-movement results suggest that the participants were unaware of how important the body was in their decisions.

Article Topics

 |   |   | 

Latest Biometrics News

 

What to do if certificates for passive authentication fail

By Ihar Kliashchou, Chief Technology Officer at Regula Electronic documents are praised for their top-notch security, mainly due to RFID chip…

 

Biometric passports get refresh in Indonesia, face hurdles in Lebanon and Kenya

Nations across the global south are looking to biometric passports as the next generation of travel documents. Indonesia will mark…

 

Biometrics, electronic devices and identity credentials converging

Biometrics in electronic devices and ID documents to support digital identity are a major theme of the week’s top stories…

 

SITA wraps up acquisition of Materna IPS

SITA reports it has completed all necessary regulatory and legal procedures and finalized its acquisition of Materna IPS, a provider…

 

Payface lands new retail biometric payments deal in Brazil

Brazilian face biometrics payments startup Payface has clinched a deal with supermarket chain Ítalo. Ítalo Supermercados, based in the southern…

 

EU to fund digital programs with €108m, including digital identity

The European Union has issued a new call for funding within the Digital Europe Programme (DIGITAL), allocating over 108 million…

Comments

3 Replies to “NIST, University of Texas researchers say there’s more to image-based biometric recognition than faces alone”

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Most Read This Week

Featured Company

Biometrics Insight, Opinion

Digital ID In-Depth

Biometrics White Papers

Biometrics Events