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FaceTec alleges stolen biometric liveness technology in lawsuit against iProov

FaceTec alleges stolen biometric liveness technology in lawsuit against iProov

FaceTec is suing iProov, alleging infringement of its intellectual property for biometric liveness by copying features from FaceTec’s patented technology to iProov’s ‘Liveness Assurance’ tool.

The lawsuit also alleges breach of contract and intentional interference with contractual obligations, and FaceTec says iProov willfully infringed on its patents. iProov also participated extensively in FaceTec’s Spoof Bounty Program and improperly incorporated aspects of FaceTec’s biometric technology that it learned of as a result.

The announcement of the legal action follows immediately on the heels of FaceTec appointing veteran litigation attorney Terry A. Coffing as its new chief legal officer, an appointment made explicitly to protect the company’s IP.

“FaceTec stands ready to defend its intellectual property rights to the fullest extent of the law against any and all who choose to infringe,” Coffing states.

The complaint was filed in the District Court for Nevada, days before the close of 2021. It centers around U.S. Patent 10,776,471 B2 for a ‘Facial recognition authentication system including path parameters,’ but notes several other biometrics patents which it says may have also been infringed.

The spoof bounty program has turned up two previously-unknown vulnerabilities in FaceTec’s liveness software, but participants sign an agreement not to reverse-engineer the company’s technology for their own use, according to the filing. Despite the agreement, FaceTec says this is exactly what iProov did.

Further, an iProov employee is accused of spending “an estimated 80 hours attempting Level 5 camera bypass attacks in June-July of 2020, even though there was no financial bounty offered to incentivize that type of attack during that time frame.” The result of this action, FaceTec alleges, is the inclusion of a security technique developed by FaceTec which it calls ‘Camera Cycling’ in its Liveness Assurance offering.

iProov also disclosed information learned through the Spoof bounty Program to a third party, which is a partner of FaceTec. Mutual partners of the two biometrics providers include Jumio.

A FaceTec representative suggested in an email to Biometric Update that iProov’s attempts to upgrade its liveness detection may have been motivated by a ‘How to spoof IProov (sic)’ video posted recently to YouTube.

FaceTec notes in the filing that its biometric liveness detection technology is used for approximately 500 million annual liveness checks on six continents.

The plaintiff seeks assurance that iProov will stop violating its agreements with FaceTec, along with triple damages and attorneys’ fees.

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