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Telmate provides corrections facilities with inmate and visitor face and voice biometrics


Voice and facial biometrics collected by Telmate’s inmate communications systems from both prisoners and those communicating with them are being shared with law enforcement, Filter magazine reports.

Biometrics are used to verify the identity of both parties in inmate communications in order to enforce calling restrictions, prevent inmates from extorting calling funds from other inmates, and to enable confidant attribution of any evidence captured during the communications. Telmate Evolving Biometrics Solution (TEBS) continuously monitors visits for illicit content and behavior, in addition to identity verification. For phone conversations, inmates’ family and friends must be identified by Telmate Verified.

Telmate also offers Advanced Voice Analysis and Voice Stress Analysis through tablet, phone, or kiosk access points, which it says can enable investigators to identify parts of conversations the include suspicious behavior or may indicate potential deception or violence. Promotional videos on the company’s website indicate that biometric voiceprints it has collected have been used as evidence in court cases.

Signing up to a Telmate service, such as its gettingout.com, requires consenting to terms that include collecting and sharing biometric data, as well as bank account data, location information, and metadata. The data it collects is not owned by Telmate, but by the correctional facility which contracts it, with information sharing therefore determined by the policies of the facility.

North American Marketing Manager for Gemalto/Cogent Amy McKeown told Biometric Update in September that identifying recently released convicts who are not allowed to visit prisons is one of the new applications facial recognition is being deployed for in corrections facilities.

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