Social media, databases, behavioral identifiers said future of law enforcement biometrics
“We think the next wave of advancement for biometrics [for law enforcement] will come from a social context through … easier access and user-generated data [that] will make facial recognition more effective than ever before,” a new paper has forecasted.
The paper, 2018: Three Predictions for Biometrics in Law Enforcement, recently presented by the International Quality and Productive Center’s (IQPC) Biometrics for Government and Law Enforcement conference in conjunction with the Institute for Defense & Government Advancement (IDGA), said, “Law enforcement authorities now have access to the FBI’s growing facial recognition database which they are able to use for several purposes, including comparing the faces of suspected criminals to their driver’s license and ID photos.”
The two groups also noted that, “Facial recognition systems today are becoming much more sophisticated,” pointing out, “mobile biometrics makes it much easier for agents to have access in the field to the tools they need to speed up processing of human identification (via smartphones and other mobile devices). Biometric functionality is achieved on a mobile device either through its built in biometric sensors or by attaching portable biometric hardware to it via a USB cable or Wi-Fi.”
“Facebook and Google already have collected enough data and perfected algorithms to distribute information that can fill in missing faces in the FBI and local department facial recognition library,” and that “as improved facial recognition for law enforcement moves full speed ahead, the next 5 to 10 years will bring near-perfect and robust facial recognition abilities, along with laws that accommodate the use of data for law enforcement purposes,” the report stated.
In addition, the report said, “Collaborative and predictive analytics will be employed for prevention and punishment. Ethical grey area notwithstanding, ‘DNA shaming,’ or using someone’s DNA to link them to a crime and bringing them justice could soon be in effect. One example was ‘the ‘Face of Litter’ ad campaign that went viral a couple of years back. As a way to crack down on litter, Hong Kong partnered with Ogilvy advertising and Parabon Nanolabs (using technology developed in partnership with the Department of Defense) to deploy technology that identified physical characteristics of a litterbug.”
This new “technology took a two-dimensional look at DNA, and without identifying a person specifically, extrapolated portraits using DNA found on pieces of litter and posted the images in public places to shame the litterbugs,” the report said, nothing, “This technology was crude in 2015 and purposely limited, but it is just the beginning of what DNA shaming can lead to.”
The IQPC/IDGA report said, “New biometric identifiers in the FBI’s ‘Next Generation Identification’ program are intended to advance the bureau’s biometric identification services beyond fingerprints alone into a multimodal biometric database. Other modes include voice, iris and facial recognition. Once fully deployed, the new initiatives will promote a high level of information sharing, support interoperability, and provide a foundation for using multiple biometrics for positive identification. The existing database currently holds iris scans and DNA samples, but the newly updated database will also contain tattoos,” which are decidedly valuable to law enforcement across the nation in combatting increasing gang activity, such as the MS-13 and 18th Street gangs which have roots in Central America.
And that’s important because both gangs have been documented to have ties to Mexican narco-cartels and jihadi terrorist organizations, the oldest of which have had operational infrastructures in place in the region for decades, according to unpublished government reports and intelligence materials from the CIA and Department of Defense.
According to recent predictions by LexisNexis Risk Solutions, “evolving threats of terrorism, drug abuse and human trafficking will be the top three challenges impacting US law enforcement in 2018 … While these problems are familiar, new techniques and technologies used by perpetrators will require agencies to share data, employ new intelligence technologies and work together more closely to combat the threats effectively.”
“Terrorism will move into local communities,” LexisNexis Risk Solutions predicted, saying, “Local communities are becoming the new battleground for both domestic and foreign-led terrorists, according to the latest data trends from the US Extremist Crime Database. Not counting last year’s high-profile attacks, there have been 85 deadly attacks by violent extremists in the US since 9/11 linked to both radical Islamist and far right ideologies, killing 225 citizens.
The company said, “From Sayfulo Saipov who used a truck to run down people along a Manhattan bike path to the Orlando nightclub shooting to the Las Vegas massacre, terrorists are increasingly targeting soft civilian venues within local communities to strike fear into the population. Some are lone wolf attacks; others orchestrated by foreign-based extremist groups bent on carrying out attacks in the west. Local communities will also continue to grow as breeding grounds for radicalizing future terrorists, fueled by local extremist groups operating under the radar as well as the use of the Internet and social media to recruit and train individuals.”
“Another proposed element of an updated [law enforcement biometric] database includes an image matching service,” the IQPC/IDGA report said. “Images of a person of interest from security cameras or photos accessed from sources such as the Internet could be compared against a national repository of images held by the FBI,” “These will be supported by an advancement in Behavioral Biometrics, or the measure of uniquely identifying and measurable patterns in human activities.”
The report concluded by saying, “Today’s behavioral biometrics go way beyond signature, voice, and speech, into analyzing multiple data and endpoint interactions like hand-eye coordination, pressure, hand tremors, navigation and other finger movements. With these, you can tell how well people know the information they are entering and how familiar they are with the application they are using by how they engage with it.”
And, “When you combine access with user-generated data, the efficiency takes a whole new turn. Criminal ID solutions are crime analysis tools that form an all-encompassing ecosystem of tools that can be utilized for crime resolution. These are called ‘integrated systems’ and can unify centralized crime data databases with data mining algorithms to help with analysis of crime pattern detection.”
Not surprisingly, M2SYS predicted in 2015 both governments and private industry would necessarily need to turn to mobile biometrics to speed up processing of human identification, pointing out that, “Mobile biometrics simply means achieving individual biometric identification on a mobile device with the portability to be easily moved or shifted from one place to another. Biometric functionality can be achieved on a mobile device either through its built in biometric sensors or by attaching portable biometric hardware to it via a USB cable or through a Wi-Fi connection.”
Biometrics Research Group, Inc. had already projected the global law enforcement biometrics market will grow to US$18 billion by 2020 from its 2015 value of US$7.5 billion.
The group said the law enforcement market it studied includes the use of biometrics to identify or verify the identity of individuals who have been apprehended or incarcerated because of criminal activity; suspected of criminal activity; or whose movement is restricted as a result of criminal activity.
“Biometrics may [also] be used to identify non-cooperative or unknown subjects, to ensure that the correct inmates are released, or to verify that users under home arrest are in compliance,” the firm said.