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New entrants join biometrics market as established players branch out

New entrants join biometrics market as established players branch out

New biometrics projects and innovations like Akiyama Group’s Natosafe baby biometrics system, Tata’s Indian passports and new access control market entrant Fuse Identities made headlines this week on Biometric Update. Totm has a new strategic deal to expand its market reach, which could result in a new joint venture, Socure’s Matt Thompson discusses pursuing the U.S. government market.

Top biometrics news of the week

One of the most impressive innovations for digital identity shared at ID4Africa 2022 was Natosafe from Akiyama Group. The Integrated Biometrics partner links mothers’ fingerprints with infants’ footprint biometrics to improve the quality of birth registration in Brazil, and could help with one of the major remaining challenges in delivering ID for all.

That same challenge of raising birth registration rates also includes motivating parents to engage with the process is wherever they live, and the suggestion to require birth certificates for school enrollment was among the notable suggestions heard during a livecast presentation of highlights from the dialogue from ID4Africa 2022’s in-person workshops. Workshops on digital public infrastructure and border control were also examined in-depth during the second, online portion of ID4Africa’s Annual General Meeting.

A UN report on how social protection programs can fail to reach their intended recipients puts some of the blame squarely on the requirement of digital identity possession for systems that are not universally accessible. Uganda is presented as an example of system that is both mandatory and highly exclusionary.

Senegal’s national digital ID project has begun, with the intention of having it in place for universal access to government and private sector services by 2024. Finland meanwhile is preparing legislation to form the basis for its own digital identity system. The Cayman Islands, Saudi Arabia, Thailand and the Philippines are also updating their identity systems, or attempting to.

India’s new biometric passports supplied by Tata could be still issued before the end of the year, according to the latest reports. They were original supposed to be ready in 2021, but the process of updating all 93 seva kendras across the country is still being carried out.

Several businesses have come together to form a joint venture specializing in biometric access control technologies, called Fuse Identities. The founders include people involved in building up Zwipe and Fingerprint Cards, and Fuse is already providing biometric access control cards to a European Government institution.

The head of U.S. communications regulator FCC has asked Apple and Google to remove social media platform TikTok from their app stores. Commissioner Brendan Carr says the company has hoovered up a broad range of user data, including keyboard analytics and biometric identifiers, and referred to reports that that data has been accessed by China’s government.

Socure SVP of Public Sector Products Matt Thompson tells Biometric Update in a feature interview that risk-based predictive analytics can be used instead of facial recognition to effectively secure government programs against widespread fraud. The company is focussing on state government contracts for now, Thompson says, to deliver a vision of identification as critical infrastructure.

Socure Founder and CEO Johnny Ayers, meanwhile, has been named an ‘Entrepreneur Of The Year 2022 Award’ winner by Ernst & Young in recognition of the company’s successes in verifying identities and reducing fraud, the company announced.

Totm Technologies has formed a strategic agreement with AI provider Presight to bring KYC, liveness detection and age classification technologies, along with contactless biometrics, to customers in the Middle East, North Africa and Southeast Asian regions. CEO Pierre Prunier tells Biometric Update that despite Presight being a young company, it is “unparalleled” in cloud and big data analytics in the region.

The palm biometric algorithms used for cashier-less shopping with Amazon One were trained with huge volumes of synthetic data. The company’s retail biometric systems and the choice of biometric modality were explained in some detail by VP Dilip Kumar at the company’s recent re:MARS 2022 event.

Meanwhile at Identiverse 2022, a pair of major technology companies seeking new ways forward in the digital identity space, Microsoft and Avast, were among participants focusing on Verifiable Credentials and self-sovereign identity.

Please let us know about any interviews, podcasts or other content we should share with the people in biometrics and the wider digital ID community in the comments below or through social media, and we wish a happy long weekend to our readers in Canada and the U.S.

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