Biometric card certification, auto applications and AI issues top this week’s biometrics and digital ID news
Significant progress was announced this week in several different areas of biometrics applications, and international issues related to identity and AI continue to make headlines.
The top story of the week is that auto makers are now working on or introducing several different kinds of biometric features for vehicles of the near and not-so-near future.
Goode Intelligence is quite bullish on the digital identity and document verification market, and if the market grows at the forecast rate, .id domain names may be a way for businesses in the industry to stand out online, a domain name industry expert tells Biometric Update.
Airports LAX in the U.S. and Bengaluru in India each launched biometric technology from Vision-Box for flight boarding, the former under CBP’s Biometric Exit program, and the latter under the Digi Yatra initiative.
Also in India, Aadhaar continues to evolve, with government officials considering mandating the authentication system’s use for high-value transactions to reduce fraud. Also on the financial front, one of the final hurdles to the potential commercial roll-out of biometric payment cards has been cleared, as a solution powered by technology from Precise Biometrics, NXP Semiconductors, and Fingerprint Cards has received Mastercard CAST certification.
Orlando Police Department’s oft-cited and controversial trial of Amazon’s Rekognition facial biometric service has concluded without a contract, but police in Europe are moving forward with facial recognition. In South Africa, on the other hand, the Daily Maverick offers a starkly critical take on the involvement of Hikvision in human rights abuses as its local presence grows. Data protection is receiving increasing attention in many countries in Africa, and a report on the Roundtable of African Data Protection Authorities (RADPA) authored by World Privacy Forum Found and Executive Director and RADPA Rapporteur Pam Dixon has been published by ID4Africa. The lively discussion on protecting identity data is summarized, and key competencies, challenges, and requirements noted by data protection authorities are shared. RADPA plans to reconvene next year.
Concerns about the international influence of Chinese technology companies may soon wane, however, if the Financial Times (paywall) is right and the wheels really have fallen off the country’s tech boom due to increased competition and the failure of the sharing economy business model in many areas. The fall in capital investment and failure of recent startups does not seem to affect Ping An, however, and Fortune examines the insurance giant which is pivoting to a multi-sector big data and AI company.
From Biometric Update’s ID4Africa coverage, an interview with a founder of a startup providing a biometric identity layer for governments and NGOs to monitor field staff and generate field data was widely read this week. In another interview at ID4Africa, UNICEF’s Cornelius Williams urges governments to take a wholistic approach to building identity systems, not forgetting sound legislation in the rush for cool new technology.
Data protection is also put in the spotlight in a TechCrunch editorial by Yung Wu, CEO of Toronto-based innovation hub MaRS Discovery District, who argues that smart city projects must establish trust to get buy-in from the public and various stakeholders. Bias in artificial intelligence is another issue receiving increased attention in the tech community, and a post from Forbes Technology Council argues that being aware of our biases can help guide better AI system development, and suggests several actions for increasing company and dataset diversity.
The Los Angeles Times reports that U.S. video game makers like Riot Games, which makes “League of Legends” and is owned by Tencent, are involved in developing surveillance tools for the Chinese government. Meanwhile an editorial in The Intercept argues that racing to beat China in AI technology development would be a mistake by the U.S., as the issues raised by its various applications need to be worked out methodically to avoid the risk of major harms.
Biometrics-backed mobile voting is a controversial idea, but a blog post by Voatz says a recent Slate article did not accurately portray blockchain infrastructure security, the context of current remote voting methods, or the nature of pilots.
Controversy is spilling over into the courtroom in Australia, where NEC has taken the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) to court over its cancelled contract.
In other legal news, the Federal Trade Commission-mandated privacy requirements Facebook will be forced to meet as part of its settlement with the regulator, including providing clear and conspicuous notice of facial recognition use, along with a separate suit filed this week by the Department of Justice over the company’s use of facial recognition, are examined by PC World.
Finally, an update to include several new government initiatives drove the ID for All living directory of digital identity projects in the developing world into the week’s most-read pieces.
Please share any stories you have come across this week that deserve industry attention in an email or the comments below.
Amazon | automotive biometrics | biometrics | digital identity | Fingerprint Cards | Goode Intelligence | HIKVISION | Mastercard | NEC | NXP Semiconductors | PING AN Tech | Precise Biometrics | Tencent | UNICEF | Vision-Box | Voatz