Some fever cam makers reportedly scamming buyers with poor biometric tools
A video surveillance publication is putting makers of questionable biometric fever cameras on notice. It alleges that it has dug up several instances of fraudulent camera claims made during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The latest example that IPVM says it has found involves contactless systems from Chinese surveillance giant Hikvision. The story was published October 14. Significant doubts exist about whether any fever cam systems can be considered reliable biometric products.
According to IPVM, Hikvision fever cameras were donated for use in two Mexico City religious landmarks. The publication alleges that the system in question cannot meet the company’s marketing boast of 1,800 fever readings per minute.
IPVM had written about Hikvision fever camera claims October 9. Then, it looked at separate but related quality claims dating back to September 28. The article noted that ISO standards for febrile screening state that accurate forehead readings from a distance are impossible.
Forehead skin temperatures are too easily influenced by air temperature. And hats, bangs and sweat can make readings unreliable or impossible to gather.
Accurate distant readings can only be had from the area around either eye’s tear duct area, a target that is hard to hit for long distance lenses, particularly if multiple people at a time approach a station.
Hikvision marketing information says that the company’s network video recorder linked to its HikCentral Pro central management system and a Hikvision long-range camera can detect forehead temperatures in one second within a half-degree Fahrenheit and as far as 23 feet.
A few days before that last report, IPVM reported on a Swiss firm allegedly selling fever cameras under false pretenses. This article reportedly found that defense contractor MIRTechnologies had “faked its certification, marketing, and sales, even falsifying a ‘Swiss Made’ certificate.”
The pitch was good, apparently. The United Nations’ International Telecommunications Union bought three of MIRTechnologies’ products, spending $30,500. IPVM research discovered that despite the company claiming it had surprised the market with the best fever camera in the world, no patents applications have been filed.
Another vendor, Convergint, allegedly has slotted numerous images around its site that imply its cameras can take readings from exposed legs when a forehead reading is impossible to capture.
There also are images that illustrate multiple people walking across a camera’s field of view, each with boxes over their bodies and temperatures over their heads. Global standards throw doubt on those being actual images or even deliverable results for buyers.