NEC revealed as provider of biometric facial recognition services for Australian Federal Police

NEC NeoFace Biometric Facial Recognition for Law Enforcement

The biometric analysis platform used by Australian Federal Police (AFP) is NEC’s NeoFace, a report from ZDNet has revealed.

An internal AFP document revealed through a freedom of information (FOI) request shows the processes officers use for one-to-many and many-to-many searches with NEC NeoFace Investigator/Reveal. It details facial recognition search request, collection, enrollment, storage, and matching policies. The Facial Biometric Analysis document also says images are received from Australia Capital Territory (ACT) watchhouse and Commonwealth offender images, driver’s license and passport databases, crime scene images from CCTV cameras, scans and photos of identity documents, images from police surveillance teams, and images taken from the internet.

Databases held externally by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Department of Home Affairs (formerly known as the Department of Immigration and Border Protection) can also be accessed for searches, in accordance with legislated guidelines.

NEC’s facial recognition technology has also been deployed by the Northern Territory government to aid its emergency response services.

The information comes as NEC has been awarded a new AU$39 million (US$26.6 million) contract with the Western Australian Police Force to upgrade its digital communications network. The contract includes data center co-location services, cloud services, and identity management.

NEC took the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) to court in July to recoup costs and expenses from a cancelled Biometric Identification Services (BIS) contract expected to be worth $52 million ($35.5 million).

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