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Flurry of biometrics rollouts and partnerships, payment cards to touchless access control

passive facial biometric liveness detection

The markets for fingerprint biometrics in cards, facial recognition for physical access control systems, and both in mobile devices are gaining momentum. Fingerprint Cards leads the week with a U.S. patent and a rollout related to biometric payment cards, while Thales is in the news for payment and national ID cards and Idemia for the latter plus a smartphone-based identity verification service. The widely-read stories below contain a dozen new customer wins and partnerships, plus more than half a dozen new biometrics and digital identity technology launches.

Top biometrics news of the week

Fingerprint Cards continues to build out its intellectual property for biometric payment cards, patenting a method for integrating its fingerprint module with standard card production techniques in the U.S. Instead of soldering the module to an inlay and then laminating that in, the new method involves electric wire-bonds and connecting pads.

Consumers in the Philippines prefer using their fingerprints for authentication, then face and iris biometrics, according to a new survey from Visa. As the country’s PhilID biometric cards continue to roll out, meanwhile, the national press is pointing out the regulatory requirements for using it in authentication, including user consent.

Contactless biometric payment cards from Thales with Fingerprint Cards’ technology is coming to market from BBVA Mexico in the form of the Smart Key Visa. The card is being launched for two groups of BBVA customers to start, but is expected to be offered to all 23.7 million clients eventually.

Selfie biometrics for remote onboarding and authentication continues to be a rapid growth area, and Stripe wants in. As the new Stripe Identity launches, Idemia, TruNarrative and Yoti each signed up new customers, while Accura Scan and Pass unveiled new solutions. ID.me’s use of biometrics, meanwhile, is being targeted by a petition campaign arguing too many people are waiting too long for unemployment benefits.

A new report on face biometrics and digital commerce shows three quarters of millennials are happy using selfie biometrics for authentication, mainly because it is convenient. Trunarrative, Veriff, Sumsub and iDenfy have each signed up fintech service providers to help them meet their regulatory obligations and prevent fraud, while a mystery provider won a Malaysian social media customer.

Jumio VP of APAC Frederic Ho joins BFM’s Tech Talk podcast to discuss how Malaysia’s digital identity program will impact inclusivity, online service access, and the country’s economy. Ho emphasizes the importance of liveness, talks about what makes a good identity verification solution, and praises the Philippines’ rapid embrace of digital technologies.

iPhones are taking another step towards going passwordless, with Apple testing a new WebAuthn-based feature as part of iCloud Keychains that allows users to associate their Face ID or Touch ID biometrics with the login for a particular account across different devices. While the feature only works with other Apple products at the moment, the company is in talks to add support for cross-platform authentication.

South Korean biometric authentication startup Octatco, SK Telecom and one of the latter’s subsidiaries are developing a keycard utilizing fingerprints with a quantum random number generator for FIDO passwordless authentication. The EzQuant security keys has been through FIDO Alliance interoperability testing, and can be integrated with various enterprise software systems.

Call volumes during the pandemic spiked by 800 percent prompting more than three-quarters of fraud detection and security managers to change their protocols and policies, according to Pindrop data.  CTO Collin Davis maps the altered fraud landscape, including tough terrain for fintechs, in a Biometric Update guest post.

Nepal is currently deciding between Thales and Idemia’s competing bids for its national biometric ID card contract after a delay caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Each bid is for between $14 million and $15 million to issue an expected 12 million cards, but Idemia ran the pilot, and was previously awarded a contract without a competitive process.

SITA, NEC and Star Alliance have formed a partnership to make flight boarding with face biometrics work across the Alliance’s member airlines with only one enrollment, and advance deployments of the technology throughout the world. NIC I:Delight and SITA Smart Path will be connected for combined use at up to 460 airports.

Biometric touchless access control deployments have been announced by Biosite for a construction site and Invixium for an industrial facility and data centers. Amid this booming market, new hardware products in the space have been developed by HID Global and Anviz, and ZKTeco has launched video access management software.

Olympic venues spread around Tokyo will be using NEC’s face biometrics to authenticate participating athletes, as well staff, media and volunteers during the 2021 games, putting the technology to the test in one of the year’s most intensely-covered events, E&T Magazine. The article considers the data collection implications, and says a strong performance at the games by the technology could inspire more extensive deployments, but the reverse may also be true.

In a pair of interesting webinars over the past week, BixeLab explained the concept and value of Red Teaming for testing biometric systems and the EAB went in-depth on the TELEFI facial recognition forensic data sharing system.

The Los Angeles Review of Books carries a review of Susan Liautaud’s ‘The Power of Ethics: How to Make Good Choices in a Complicated World’ by Rochester Institute of Technology Philosophy Professor Evan Selinger, who co-wrote an editorial recently for Wired arguing against identity verification with face biometrics. Selinger is not impressed with the arguments made by Liautaud, and takes umbrage at her dismissal of proposals to ban hazardous technologies.

Submissions have closed in the International Identity Day Design Competition, organized by ID4Africa and sponsored by Integrated Biometrics. An official design for ID-Day 2021 will be selected from among the submissions by African digital artists, and offered for re-use by the identity community, with the winner receiving a cash prize of $3,000.

Whether you are taking a helicopter ride over the mountains, or just racing your sportscar from one shootout to another, you can bring your belongings comfortably with Kabuto Luggage featuring a biometric sensor from Fingerprint Cards. The company’s latest high-production video promotes the new, larger entry in its fingerprint-secured luggage line, The Trunk.

Please let us know of any editorials, podcasts or other content we should share with the biometrics industry and broader digital ID community in the comments below or through social media.

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