Biometric facial recognition app released by NEC, Kiwi developers to monitor coronavirus

NEC

To stop the spread of coronavirus, NEC has partnered with software developers in New Zealand to develop NEC iQuarantine, a facial recognition mobile app that people can use to remotely provide health and location updates from any location, for up to three times a day, the company announced.

NEC collaborated with three Wellington-based organizations to set up a team of 10 to ensure a product would be ready by March 27, explained Steven Graham, Head of Innovation and Transformation at NEC New Zealand Ltd, in a video. According to Graham, the app was built on the principles of location tracking, identity verification through biometrics, symptom monitoring, triage, case escalation and case intervention, and it is a “highly scalable, cloud-first approach based in a great mobile-first user experience.”

“Thanks to the hard work of our partners at Fronde and Alphero “NEC iQuarantine” is now ready to help everyday Kiwis work with health services to halt the spread of COVID-19,” Graham said, in a prepared statement.

By developing the iQuarantine App, NEC wants to help optimize resources and New Zealand’s health infrastructure.

“We know that the ability to maximize time and resources will be a critical success factor for Community Based Assessment Centers, District Health Boards, and the Ministry of Health, as they grapple with what’s likely to be unprecedented demand on their people, and services,” Graham added.

The mobile app helps users monitor the number of days spent in isolation and informs them about any changes related to COVID-19. iQuarantine can also be successfully used by healthcare workers to access case information. When health services receive notification that a user is symptom-free, the Salesforce-powered NEC iQuarantine Case Management Portal is automatically updated. Amazon Web Services will provide data storage.

NEC’s biometric algorithms have ranked first or second in several accuracy categories in the latest version of NIST’s Facial Recognition Vendor Test (FRVT) Identification report.

Poland launched a quarantine app with facial recognition in March.

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