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Biometrics adoption for remote identity verification expands as tech demo begins

Biometrics adoption for remote identity verification expands as tech demo begins

Two biometrics studies, very different in form and subject, are the subject of widely-read articles on Biometric Update this week, with a U.S. government tech demonstration for remote identity verification kicking off, and an academic paper establishing a scientific explanation for the development of unique fingerprints in utero. Expanding use of digital identity for remote identity verification in the UK and Pakistan also made headlines, as did interviews with the CEOs of Corsight and Nametag.

Top biometrics news of the week

The UK’s new rules for right to work, right to rent, and DBS checks under the DIATF are being refined, with digital identity checks mandatory for some, while others can be performed manually in-person. Credas is warning, meanwhile, that unscrupulous vendors are using similar language to trick prospective clients into thinking they are certified under the scheme.

Pakistan’s NADRA has launched a service to allow citizens living abroad to verify their identities with selfie biometrics to exercise power-of-attorney privileges. The Pak-ID service is available to 9 million Pakistanis living abroad, and the POA site has already been accessed by 1.5 million of them.

NADRA boss Tariq Malik will lead a UNDP Technical Advisory Committee as it provides guidance for a National Human Development Report 2023 looking at digital transformation in Pakistan. The World Bank is meanwhile reported to be considering bankrolling a $78 million project to enhance the country’s digital economy.

EU Parliament has updated the rules for the bloc’s digital identity wallets, mandating versions provided by national governments and alternatives to their use. The framework draft has also been amended to require the capability to read and verify digital ID documents, to perform peer-to-peer transactions, and record third-party activity.

The deadline for the first track of DHS’ RIVTD, which focusses on ID document validation, passed this week, after details were shared with vendors in a technical clarification webinar. DHS S&T’s Arun Vemury and Yevgeniy Sirotin explained how biometrics developers can participate in the demonstration, and how it will be run. The two remaining tracks will cover biometric verification and presentation attack detection.

The IBIA has responded forcefully to a suggestion by a group of U.S. Senate Democrats calling for the TSA to halt its use of facial recognition on air travelers. The Senators are mistaken about how the system works, or possible using misleading statements to score political points, the industry organization says. The Security Industry Association likewise pointed out that 70 percent of Americans prefer to use face biometrics for airport screening.

Amid staggering fraud perpetrated against American taxpayers, the IRS Criminal Investigations unit contracted a firm called Cobweb Technologies to provide “open-source intelligence,” according to Vice Motherboard. That intelligence is gathered from both the open and dark web with AI-powered tools, which may include object and facial recognition, and can help agents go undercover online.

The features used in fingerprint biometrics are formed in fetuses through similar early development to hair follicles, arranged in a pattern determined by a process called Turing reaction-diffusion. This is according to an academic paper authored by researchers from around the UK, Czechia and China. Dr. Eliah Aronoff-Spencer tells Biometric Update that the study provides definitive proof that fingerprints are already unique at birth.

Contracts won by Gemalto between 2015 and 2018 have resurfaced with an investigation by authorities in France into allegations they were won improperly. Thales is cooperating with the investigation into contracts won in Cameroon, DR Congo, Gabon, Niger, Senegal and Uganda. Documents have been turned over to the National Financial Prosecutor’s Office.

Nametag CEO Aaron Painter explains the biometric identity verification system the company has developed for smartphone users without relying on an app or web browser in an interview with Biometric Update. The solution provides reusable identity verification based on data stored in the device’s secure enclave and under-utilized iOS and Android tools.

Corsight’s new CEO Shai Toren tells Biometric Update that the company is planning to introduce major new capabilities this year, complementing its unbiased facial recognition designed for tolerance of real-world conditions. He discusses Corsight’s new phase, algorithm training data, and why it decided to produce its own privacy manual.

Please let us know about any articles, podcasts or other content we should share with the people who work in biometrics and the broader digital identity space in the comments below or through social media.

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