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Facewatch, Vista CCTV deliver GDPR-compliant biometric surveillance solution for retail, hospitality

Facewatch, Vista CCTV deliver GDPR-compliant biometric surveillance solution for retail, hospitality

Facewatch is working with Vista CCTV to bring to market a GDPR-compliant biometric facial recognition solution for the retail and hospitality sectors. According to the UK-based biometric technology company, the system protects businesses from low level retail crime without having to replace existing surveillance cameras or systems.

“This is a really exciting partnership,” says Dean Kernot, Vista Sales & Marketing Manager. “Retail crime is a growing issue for retailers and Facewatch offers a legal and safe way to provide a deterrent to both shop theft and violence in store. Vista will be working with our network to train, support and deliver this new ground-breaking technology.”

“The Facewatch facial recognition system delivers a game changing technology which is incredibly accurate and fully GDPR compliant. Our solution is aimed at making the retail and hospitality environment safer by providing a deterrent against store theft and bad behavior,” adds Nick Fisher, Facewatch CEO. “As a technology focused business, we can only succeed by working with established and successful partners in the security industry that share our goals and passion. Vista are leaders in their field, and we are astonishingly privileged to be able to work with them to enable Facewatch to scale rapidly by building, with Vista, a network of accredited partners.”

The solution is in compliance with E.U.’s GDPR and Facewatch is in control of the data. It has been trialed in retail for the past 18 months and is now available as a licensed-based product via Vista accredited partners.

Facewatch is based on a software-as-a-service technology model with advanced biometric facial recognition and cloud-based watchlist. The watchlist is a biometric database that stores faces of individuals who have a history of shoplifting or other crimes at companies using the service.

The hardware includes a standard HD CCTV camera and Intel NUC, a mini-PC that is 4×4 inches in size and requires little power to operate. It can play and record video at 4K Ultra HD clarity. The cameras are installed at the store’s entrance and send images to an NUC located on site that converts the images to an algorithm, which is then cross-matched against the watchlist. If a match is detected, a warning notification is sent to the retailer.

A shoplifter can be added to the watchlist in six key presses and 20 seconds.

“They simply follow a dropdown menu, the time and date are automated, tick the box, the whole thing’s designed to be simple but highly secure and includes a confirmatory legal statement confirming that the information is accurate,” says Nick Fisher, CEO of Facewatch.

“If no match is discovered, the image is deleted in 0.3 seconds,” Fisher adds, “and the entire process—from the moment a known shoplifter comes through the door, to the instant the retailer gets an alert—takes less than two seconds.”

In related retail biometrics news, a regional chain of convenience stores in the U.S. Pacific Northwest is expanding its use of a facial recognition system that is designed to keep out people it does not want to patronize its businesses.

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