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DHS details 2022 biometrics rally focused on group face processing

Idemia I&S touts 2021 results
DHS details 2022 biometrics rally focused on group face processing

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science & Technology Directorate (S&T) revealed specific information about the scenario for the 2022 Biometric Technology Rally that will pit face biometrics providers in a competitive scenario test to further refine the field.

The DHS S&T Biometric Technology Rally is part of an ongoing series by the American research organization to conduct tests of facial recognition technology from academia and the industry to gain further insights and improve the applications.

The 2022 edition of the rally scheduled for September 2022 is set to examine the ability for biometric providers to discern between people in groups and their level of consent to face biometric scanning. It will involve a scenario with an unattended ‘high throughput’ scenario where group-processing systems must rapidly capture biometrics from multiple subjects. The ideal system would best process individuals who agree to be biometrically processed, and ignore the individuals who did not consent.

S&T says it will challenge industry to develop “faster, more accurate, and easier-to-use biometric recognition capabilities to improve security and ease of use at security checkpoints.”

It will seek to demonstrate the efficiency, effectiveness, and user satisfaction with current commercial biometric systems and inform the ability of acquisition systems to capture images that work across algorithms, the capability of matching systems to work across acquisition systems, system performance based on race, gender, and skin tone, and how they protect the privacy of bystanders and non-users to preserve anonymity.

According to a slideshow provided by the S&T, the scenario will consist of a station made up of three lanes: left, center, and right. The unmanned biometric acquisition systems will be installed in a six-foot (183 cm) by eight-foot (244 cm) area in the center lane. From there, volunteers will be assigned as ‘in lane’ and ‘out lane,’ and simultaneously pass through the station together, unlike previous rally tests where they went one-by-one. In lane volunteers will walk through the center lane and will be told to use the biometric acquisition system. Meanwhile, the out lane volunteers will move through the left and right lanes and instructed to not use the biometric acquisition system.

Upon the combined group leaving the station, in lane volunteers will have their wrist band scanned and rate their satisfaction with the biometric acquisition system, while the group returns for next pass. The S&T says each interval will take 30 seconds.

Different volunteers may be designated for the in lane or out lane, and different numbers of volunteers may be designated for the in lane. The same volunteers may be designated in lane on multiple passes. It also says the biometric acquisition systems must always submit a single image for each in lane volunteer on each pass and never submit images for any out lane volunteers.

S&T says the ideal biometric system will reliably capture a single quality face image for each individual in groups of varying size. The metrics it will evaluate for face biometric capture are for efficiency, satisfaction, effectiveness, privacy, and equitability.

The Directorate further says participation in the 2022 rally will have benefits for acquisition system providers and matching system providers ranging from harvesting biometric data from a diverse sample of people, the opportunity to test their systems with specific demographic groups to fine-tune their systems, and partnership opportunities.

Other perks include informing the government about a provider’s system’s performance in an operationally relevant scenario test, industry recognition, the chance to attend a networking opportunity named VIP Day with government and industry representatives, and participating in the Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with DHS S&T.

The application deadline is July 1, 2022, and testing is to take place from September 14, 2022 to September 30, 2022.

Idemia I&S NA shows strong results in 2021 rally

Idemia Identity &Security North America says its biometric acquisition and matching systems proved highly successful in the 2021 S&T Biometric Rally, as the company unmasked itself from the otherwise aliased results announcement.

The 2021 rally focused on scenarios that tested the participants on the effectiveness of masked and unmasked subjects against included diverse demographic groups of skin tones and gender. It involved five face image acquisition systems and ten face recognition algorithms that were evaluated for efficiency, user satisfaction, and effectiveness at identifying 601 volunteers.

It measured the biometric system providers on operational focused True Identification Rate (TIR), the performance of an acquisition and matching system combination; and matching focused True Identification Rate (matching-TIR), the performance of an acquisition and matching system combination, discounting any failures of the acquisition system to submit images for matching.

Idemia’s acquisition system was codenamed ‘Herard’ and its matching system was designated ‘Paint.’

For effectiveness without masks, Idemia’s combination of acquisition and matching shared first place with another company by identifying 99.7 percent of individuals. It fared slightly worse on masked individuals, however, placing sixth with a 90.8 percent identification rate. The top performer with masks correctly identified 93 percent of people. No participant met the S&T’s standards for 95 percent or higher TIR threshold, however.

For matching-TIR, Idemia continued to be a powerhouse on unmasked testing, with a 100 percent identification rate, joined by five other joint acquisition and matching system solutions. It was a top performer on masked matching-TIR, identifying 99.6 percent of individuals correctly.

Idemia says its matching system also was rated well for ease of use, performed a transaction time under four seconds, and recorded a satisfaction rate of over 95 percent. It also states its biometric systems showed an absence of skin tone and gender bias from the rally.

“Every year, the Rally provides one of the most definitive objective assessments of how facial recognition systems perform in a simulated operational environment,” says Donnie Scott, CEO of Idemia I&S. “Our top-ranking and top-tier results reflect the integrity of our solutions, and the insights from the results are an invaluable resource for us as we continue to evolve and perfect these technologies.”

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