Next-gen biometrics deployments and digital identity concepts hit milestones
New spins on familiar technology are the theme of the week in biometrics. The digital identity community is coming to terms with “agile identity” and the newly-approved DID Core, but this week’s most-read articles on Biometric Update also focused on how NEC advanced its facial recognition accuracy to current levels, and G+D’s acquisition of Valid USA to expand the mDL presence of its subsidiary Veridos in America. New deployments of Tascent’s multimodal biometrics and a milestone for biometric cards with id3’s match-on-card fingerprint algorithms were also revealed.
Top biometrics news of the week
Add ‘agile identity’ to agile development and management among important terms for the digital world. Important, in this case, according to Deloitte, because its vision of digital ID based on portability, transparency, and individual choice is necessary to achieve the effective digital transformation of government services. Verifiable Credentials play a key role.
The W3C has approved the DID Core 1.0 specification as a recommendation, despite 11th-hour objections from Google, Apple and Mozilla. W3C Director Tim-Berners Lee overruled the objections, suggesting the specification can be further improved with consensus on standard DID methods. Decentralized identifiers are considered by many to be a future pillar of decentralized ID, along with Verifiable Credentials, which DIDs are used within.
An assessment of biometrics self-enrollment technologies by the UK Home Office finds that both kiosks and mobile apps have promise. Kiosks are closer, needing some work on ease of use in unsupervised environments, while fingerprint capturing and PAD on mobile devices need to improve, the feasibility trials for immigration vetting found.
NEC has commemorated a commendation from Japan’s government praising the work of five of the company’s biometrics experts with a review of the dramatic gains made in facial recognition accuracy. A pair of blog posts describe the scale of improvement, and how the researchers achieved it.
The latest acquisition in the digital ID sector is G+D signing an asset purchase agreement to take over Valid USA’s security technologies for payments and digital ID. Veridos will integrate Valid’s mobile driver’s license business in the U.S., giving it a presence in six states.
For countries like Nigeria that are rolling out central bank digital currencies, the IMF cautions that digital infrastructure is a key to success. That infrastructure includes a robust national digital identity system and a legal framework that makes KYC rules easy to enforce, which both need work in many countries.
Tascent’s multimodal biometrics have been deployed at a Singapore borer crossing for vehicles to enable a trial of in-car immigration checks. The new Automated Passenger In-car Clearance System (APICS) replaces fingerprints with face and iris biometrics, and will be trialed at the Woodlands checkpoint until October.
Partners id3 Technologies and NXP are supporting the biometric functions of Peru’s new national digital identity cards. They supply Indra and PWPW, who in turn have delivered more than 7 million DNIe cards so far. Id3 says its match-on-card fingerprint algorithm was chosen for its MINEX-proven performance and low memory and energy needs.
The UN Human Rights Committee met this week amid expectations it will look into criticism of Ireland’s plans to allow a relatively broad set of facial recognition applications by a domestic rights group. The ICCL report suggests that the data protection authority and police are ill-prepared for further powers.
Engaging positively with communities about digital identity can sometimes benefit from religious or spiritual input, giveaway incentives or theme songs, among the varied suggestions in an ID4Africa LiveCast. The top advice from the recap of findings from one of four workshops held at the live event in June, however, was to talk about ID with reference to the services and service delivery channels it enables.
Anonybit’s audacious play to become a go-to biometric data security provider is given the analyst treatment by HFS Research. While largely recapping a Biometric Update feature from a year ago, the report demonstrates the continued attention on the sector, and the company in particular.
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