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Facial recognition temperature scanning, wearables and voice biometrics deployed for COVID-19 spread prevention

New solutions from ZKTeco and Arteco, LenelS2 and FLIR, Local Security, Optec, and Sonde Health
Facial recognition temperature scanning, wearables and voice biometrics deployed for COVID-19 spread prevention

New solutions combining biometrics with other technologies like body temperature scanning have been launched by ZKTeco and Arteco, Local Security and Optec, while Flir has reached a partnership agreement to provide thermal scanning for workplace access control. Facial recognition and temperature-checking systems have been implemented by a hospital in South Korea, and are reported to be in consideration by stadiums around the world. Wearables have been adopted for similar purposes by a U.S. fire department, while Sonde Health has developed a workplace safety tool with voice biometrics.

Arteco has integrated biometric facial recognition, body temperature scanning and mask detection technology from ZKTeco with its NEXT video event management software to provide organizations with contactless access control and other capabilities for safe operation during COVID-19 recovery.

Infrared thermal sensors have been added to ZKTeco’s SpeedFace touchless access control reader models SF1005-V and SF1008, which provide alerts and generate records of scan results, and can be integrated with third-party systems for access control, visitor management, time and attendance tracking, as well as Arteco’s platform.

Arteco’s NEXT combines capabilities from third-party devices including video surveillance, access control, license plate recognition (LPR), fire detection, gunshot detection, video analytics, building automation, and now ZKTeco’s biometrics.

“Arteco allows users to completely manage our ZKBioSecurity access control software and Arteco’s VEMS from a single interface,” says ZKTeco USA President and Founder Manish Dalal.

Canadian security technology company Local Security has developed a video solution for workplaces to detect hand sanitization, compliance with safety measures like mask wearing, cluster density, social distancing and more, according to a company announcement.

Real-time insights captured from existing camera systems can be sent to a safety manager or security guard for appropriate action.

The new SafeSpaces has been introduced to compliment Local Security’s other products, which integrate biometric facial recognition and other technologies from third-party providers.

Optec International has launched a new stand-alone infrared temperature scanning technology with face biometrics for safe school, church, gym, health and senior care and government buildings.

The Safe Scan product is FCC-certified, according to the announcement, and scans for elevated body temperature and mask wearing in less than a second, providing an audio reminder if a person without a mask is detected. The facial recognition feature can scan 40 faces per minute with 99 percent accuracy, Optec says.

The stand-alone unit can be easily deployed to desktops or pedestals, and an advanced terminal gate scanner with controlled door access is also available.

LenelS2 access control technology and Flir Systems thermal cameras are being integrated through a partnership reached by the companies to provide non-contact workplace screening.

Flir’s EST line of contactless thermal cameras, including the A500-EST and A700-EST, will be integrated with the LenelS2 OnGuard access control system. The solution will be available through the Carrier Healthy Building Program to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Hospital deployed system, sports stadiums consider scanning fans

A hospital in South Korea has installed an intelligent visitor management video system developed by LG Uplus (LUG+), Aju Business Daily reports. The system applies facial recognition, body temperature scanning and mask detection input to an artificial intelligence algorithm, which grants or denies access to the visitor, patient or worker.

LGU+ says its algorithm has 99 percent accuracy for biometric face identification, and the company plans to offer it for schools, churches and government offices to support safe reopening.

The hospital is also reported to be planning to introduce a 5G robot to provide on-site guidance and scan the faces of visitors already inside a building. LGU+ is a sister company to LG Electronics, which has also been developing service robots for pandemic response.

Several sports stadiums are also in the midst of tests for facial recognition for fans, either to replace tickets or for contact tracing, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Baseball’s New York Mets and the Los Angeles Football Club have been testing the technology for touchless virtual ticketing. Now, LAFC’s system is being upgraded with temperature scanning and mask detection capabilities to prevent COVID-19 transmission. LAFC fans will be asked to pull down their masks for facial recognition. Clear’s kiosks with facial recognition and fingerprint biometrics had been used by LAFC prior to the lockdown, and had tested it with 600 fans attending two games.

Trueface CEO Shaun Moore tells the Journal that facility managers are looking for ways to avoid physical credentials.

Soccer clubs in Europe are also hoping to use facial recognition, despite the warnings from some regulators that such systems could violate GDPR.

Advocates from the Future of Privacy Forum have added their voices to the chorus of sceptics concerned about the potential for loss of opportunity and civil rights by people screened with body temperature scanning systems. The effectiveness of such systems in real-life settings with large crowds is also questioned.

Wearable health biometric tracking

Firefighters in Duxbury, Massachusetts have been given biometric Oura rings by the local Fire Department to track their vital signs for indications of fatigue or illness, Boston outlet WHDH reports.

The rings cost less than $300 each for the department, and were distributed on a voluntary basis, with more than 90 percent of the department participating.

Voice biometrics for COVID-19 detection

Another approach to COVID-19 spread prevention with voice biometrics has been developed by Sonde Health.

The Sonde One takes a six-second voice sample and applies machine learning to detect respiratory symptoms, including coughing, shortness of breath, chest tightness or pain, and combines the results with a comprehensive COVID-19 questionnaire that Sonde Health says is informed by CDC guidelines, plus user-inputted temperature data. Instructions about who can enter a workplace or should work from home are returned within a minute, the company says.

“At Sonde, we believe that voice is a vital sign and a meaningful predictor of health,” says David Liu, Chief Executive Officer for Sonde Health. “By analyzing a few seconds of speech, we can detect subtle changes in a person’s voice caused by common symptoms of respiratory disease. We built this capability into the Sonde One app so organizations can provide their employees with simple and fast COVID-19 monitoring in their pocket.”

Sonde Health has partnered with corporate wellness solutions provider Wellworks for You to make the tool available to its clients, and 5,000-person global technology company SHI International is the first to implement it.

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