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Biometric passports in high demand and technology providers stepping up

Biometric passports in high demand and technology providers stepping up

Travel-related biometrics applications, for passport issuance and airports in particular, have been resurgent, with Zwipe’s partnership for airport security in Germany, and the launch of self-service kiosks in South Africa among examples from Biometric Update’s most-read this week. Pangea has won a biometric voter registry contract, and Yoti’s age estimation technology for retail self-checkout is getting a longer look. CEO interviews with Clearview and Incognia also made headlines.

Top biometrics news of the week

PimEyes is only supposed to be used by people to search for themselves, or others with consent, on the web using facial recognition, according to the site owner, and an image removal feature is available. The site’s potential for abuse, however, and difficulty removing images are recounted by a user. Token CEO John Gunn says the situation is “begging for government intervention.”

Self-service kiosks for issuing passports and other ID documents, including capturing photos compliant with ICAO standards for biometric comparison are being launched in South Africa to improve their availability. The kiosks, which appear to be made by partners including NEC XON, can perform biometric authentication and issue birth, marriage, and death certificates, and are planned for a roll-out in shopping centers across the country.

Biometric passports and driver’s licenses are being made locally in Turkey, as the government works around chip shortage challenges, while G+D says Denmark’s passports from Veridos will be delivered on time. Suriname has passed legislation to join the ranks of countries with biometric passports, BLS International has won a visa issuance contract for German visas issued in the U.S. and Mexico, and Israel is cancelling a fingerprint requirement for passports.

Details of the ‘Biometrics@Controllane’ project have been revealed, with Zwipe supplying technology for fingerprint access cards for airport staff. Meanwhile in the U.S., Simplified Arrival has been rolled out to all international airports to screen all foreigners entering the country with biometrics, and Idemia is bringing TSA PreCheck to Nashville. Canada’s busiest airport, meanwhile, needs more biometrics to deal with swelling passenger volumes.

The UK continues to break ground in a push for age verification, with Yoti’s technology being deployed for cinemas, and its use continuing through June at supermarket self check-outs. The Proof of Age Standards Scheme wants to add smartphone-based methods of age verification, and will be ready as soon as the industry figures out how to ensure the digital credentials’ universal acceptance.

A market analysis says digital ID card issuance rebounded last year, following a pandemic-prompted slowdown, and will grow modestly this year. The United Arab Emirates is expanding the use of its ID cards, meanwhile, Guatemala plans to issue close to 400,000 cards this year, and Jamaica showed off its new card design.

Pangea has been selected to provide the biometric technology behind Jamaica’s incoming voter registry, in a five year contract for an unspecified dollar amount. The company will supply, install and configure an integrated centralized system, commission a multimodal ABIS, and integrate the new technologies with existing systems.

The recent tsunami of biometric data privacy lawsuits in Illinois over employee time and attendance systems has given way to a wider variety of defendants, with a trio of consumer applications the latest example. Kodak kiosks for passport photos to ICAO’s biometrics standards for passports at CVS Pharmacies have prompted a suit, as have virtual try-on services from Estée Lauder and L’Oréal and Microsoft’s Photos app.

A report compares China’s fast action on AI regulation and the slower, methodical approach the European Union is taking, just as an initial assessment is published by the American government’s AI research task force. The assessment from NAIRR finds that AI development resources need to be more widely accessible outside of a few businesses and universities.

Payments authenticated with mobile biometrics will reach $1.2 trillion within the next five years, according to Juniper Research. A market report forecasts the EU’s PSD2 regulation and digital payment solutions from phone-makers like Apple Pay will drive the market.

Clearview AI CEO Hoan Ton-That discusses the company’s genesis, pivot to commercial biometric services, and new focus on developers, following the example of Stripe and Twilio, in a feature interview with Biometric Update. The company considered physical access control and other applications before realizing that the database it had used to train its algorithm could be packaged for law enforcement.

Incognia CEO Andre Ferraz explains his company’s newfound focus on mobile location authentication as it plans how to allocate the $15.5 million it raised in a Series A funding round. Along with behavioral and on-device biometrics and device fingerprinting, the technology represents part of an ideal authentication stack, according to Ferraz.

IDPro is sending two people to the upcoming Identiverse 2022 in Denver, Colorado later this month to broaden the audience. Applicants for the ‘Diversity & Inclusion Packages’ must answer a series of questions by June 7.

Honorlock is the latest remote proctoring company to face criticism for using biometrics in ways that are proving unreliable, yet being relied upon too heavily, The New York Times writes. A Times test of Amazon Rekognition, which Honorlock uses, inspires no confidence, and ProctorU has already ditched its AI-only product as faith in the premise of automated academic dishonesty detection loses its shine.

Please let us know about any online content we should share with the people in biometrics and the broader digital ID community in the comments below or through social media.

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