FB pixel

US Dept of State intends to award IDEMIA with facial recognition contract


Earlier this week the U.S. Department of State’s Consular Affairs office announced its plan to issue a new sole source contract to its current facial recognition software provider IDEMIA. The fixed price contract is for one year with the option for four one-year extensions.

The DoS CA office is responsible for issuing visas to foreign nationals and passports to U.S. citizens. According to the justification for using other than full and open competition, “IDEMIA is the only known contractor with the demonstrated experience and integrated software” and is “the most accurate non-Russian or Chinese software according to the … National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Face Recognition Vendor Test”.

Additionally, IDEMIA is currently performing the same work under the incumbent contract which is due to expire on September 29,2018. The company – previously MorphoTrust – already screens the identities of the more than 30 million passport and visa applicants per year for Consular Affairs.

The department added that “without IDEMIA’s continued involvement, the Government will experience cost, schedule, and performance degradation as well as a gap in mission critical programs resulting in a threat to national security” as “all commercial face recognition systems employ proprietary processing and unique storage formats for their face templates. The roughly 360 million current face templates in IDEMIA’s proprietary format would need to be recreated in a different contractor’s proprietary format.”

IDEMIA announced in March that its technology had won the top ranking as the most accurate 1:1 algorithm out of 33 competitors in the SELFIE and WEBCAM categories of NIST’s Face Recognition Vendor Test (FTRVT).

Article Topics

 |   |   | 

Latest Biometrics News


Biometric ID cards remain foundational, but don’t count out fingerprint smart cards

Biometric national ID cards top the most-read news of the week on Biometric Update, between a contract in Cameroon for…


DHS and TSA adjust digital strategies with biometrics, facial recognition

U.S. government agencies are adapting in real time to a digital landscape transformed by AI, identity fraud, deepfakes and biometric…


Finger vein biometrics from Global ID deployed in Namibia’s fight against HIV

A new application of Global ID’s finger vein biometrics to help reduce HIV Infections among vulnerable young people is launching…


Bill allowing biometric age verification for booze sales moves to Missouri Senate

The Maryville Forum reports that Missouri retailers could soon perform age verification using biometric methods such as facial recognition or…


Victorians sign up for mobile driving licenses in droves but let down at the pub

Victoria reports 200,000 people signing up for mobile driving licenses (mDLs) within the first 48 hours of their introduction this…


Retail biometrics queues up from shopping malls to quick serve restaurants

Despite skepticism among American consumers, biometric payments in retail are about to have a moment, according to some experts. These…


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