Private sector investments and public sector biometrics contracts back lofty market forecasts
Biometrics contracts worth up to $21 million have been won by iProov and Innovalor, as governments continue to invest in digital public services, and in the case of Singapore see results. NtechLab’s numerous facial recognition customers and prospective customers made headlines this week, as did lucrative deals for IDnow and Ping Identity.
Top biometrics news of the week
iProov has won a pair of contracts to supply biometrics and related technologies for the UK’s One Login, as the government attempts to stand up a unified single-sign on process for all government services. Partner Innovalor contributes to the ID document checking side of the contracts. The contracts have a combined potential value of over $21 million.
The current version of Singapore’s digital ID Singpass is saving organizations $36 for every customer they onboard, an official said during a presentation for the Turing Institute. The next generation of the digital ID could use a more decentralized architecture based on the W3C’s Verifiable Credentials standard.
NtechLab’s position in the market includes an impressive portfolio of customers based in Western countries. This is little surprise to many in and around the biometrics industry, but a leaked customer list is causing some consternation as war ravages Ukraine. Entities on the list may have received licenses without ever using the technology, however.
Details of the leak are scant, but it does not appear to be a case of negligence like or the same level of privacy disaster as the loss of a half-million people’s personal data in Japan. That case, Vice reports, came about after a man loaded the data onto a USB stick to get some extra work in after hours, but got drunk and fell asleep before being relieved of some of his possessions and dignity.
Forecasting market size is tricky even when the market in question has more history to draw on than biometrics, and the forecast period does not include a global pandemic and fears of a widespread recession. A $184 billion prediction by Allied Market Research for the value just of mobile biometrics by 2031 suggests that the $136 billion estimate by TMR for the total biometrics market by the same year is very conservative.
Idemia is being taken to court in Kenya by Data Rights and a group of other NGOs alleging the company was negligent of human rights in its participation in the country’s National Integrated Identity Management System (NIIMS). The plaintiffs are seeking a court order to conduct a risk assessment and come up with ways to mitigate the risks found.
Voters in Kenya’s upcoming election will have their identity authenticated to confirm their right to vote with biometrics, with manual examinations based on ID numbers used as a backup. The IEBC is planning to use up to 10 fingerprints, which it expects will keep the number of failed matches low.
Biometric Update has launched the ID16.9 podcast, hosted by our own Frank Hersey, to examine progress towards the realization of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal of providing legal identity for all people, including birth registration. Guests range from high-profile UN officials to representatives of the invisible billion. Listen along on Spotify.
Michigan has agreed to destroy blood samples which have been collected from infants for routine medical examinations. DNA taken from the blood samples has been used for biometric comparison in some criminal investigations in the U.S., causing concerns related to consent and data collection purpose.
Two bodies within the U.S. government are arguing about the veracity and impact of accusations of wrongdoing involving airport digital ID systems. A whistleblowers’ complaint alleged passengers with wheelchairs and other mobility assistance devices were being allowed to cut corners by TSA PreCheck personnel, violating policy and introducing risk into the system.
It appears that deepfakes often cause a sort of cognitive dissonance even when the person unsettled by them is not able to explicitly identify them as fake. Neuroscience researchers used EEGs to discover evidence that the mind reacts differently to deepfakes with greater accuracy than spoken assessments.
Ping Identity has been acquired by Thoma Bravo in a massive $2.8 billion deal, just months after the software investment giant acquired cybersecurity company SailPoint, and also following its participation in Imprivata’s acquisition of SecureLink. Ping is currently on a six month streak of growth in its ARR.
IDnow has secured a $60 million debt facility from Blackrock to help the company expand the market reach of its selfie biometrics. Bahrain-based startup Faceki has also secured an undisclosed investment.
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