FB pixel

Professor wins grant from privacy commish to tackle facial recognition bias in Canada

Professor wins grant from privacy commish to tackle facial recognition bias in Canada
 

Dr. Gideon Christian has been awarded a $50,000 grant from Canada’s Office of the Privacy Commissioner Contributions Program for his research project, “Mitigating Race, Gender and Privacy Impacts of AI Facial Recognition Technology” to identify issues in the development and deployment of facial recognition in the country, according to an article from the University of Calgary.

“There is this false notion that technology, unlike humans, is not biased,” says Christian, PhD. “That’s not accurate. Technology has been shown (to) have the capacity to replicate human bias.”

Christian’s work will focus on private sector development and deployments of facial recognition in Canada. He will also examine the racial bias embedded in various forms of facial recognition and develop a framework to address concerns with the effects of facial recognition.

There have already been a number of cases involving wrongful arrests based on facial recognition in the U.S. Some offices have also been implementing the software disproportionately on cases identifying Black faces, with bans in cities like New Orleans being repealed.

Christian found that in Canada, “Black women, immigrants who have successfully made refugee claims, (have had) their refugee status stripped on the basis that facial recognition technology matched their face to some other person.”

A test of demographic differentials by NIST back in 2019 found that some algorithms produce higher error rates for people with darker skin, while the best-performing algorithms returned nearly even error rates for different groups. A follow-up evaluation in 2022 showed significant progress towards indistinguishable performance by the most accurate facial recognition algorithms.

Christian cites an error rate for Black women from Joy Buolamwini’s Gender Shades report, which was conducted with facial analysis algorithms, rather than biometric identification algorithms, a year before NIST’s first demographic evaluation.

“Racial bias is not new,” says Christian. “What is new is how these biases are manifesting in artificial intelligence technology… This particular problem with this technology, if unchecked, has the capacity to overturn all the progress we achieved as a result of the civil rights movement.”

Article Topics

 |   |   |   |   | 

Latest Biometrics News

 

Could be 25 years before TSA gets facial recognition in all US airports

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) foresees significant delays in implementing facial recognition across U.S. airports if revenue continues to be…

 

Single solution for regulating AI unlikely as laws require flexibility and context

There is no more timely topic than the state of AI regulation around the globe, which is exactly what a…

 

Indonesia’s President launches platform to drive digital ID and service integration

In a bid to accelerate digital transformation in Indonesia, President Joko Widodo launched the Indonesian government’s new technology platform, INA…

 

MFA and passwordless authentication effective against growing identity threats

A new identity security trends report from the Identity Defined Security Alliance (IDSA) highlights the challenges companies continue to face…

 

Zighra behavioral biometrics contracted for Canadian government cybersecurity testing

Zighra has won a contract with Shared Services Canada (SSC) to protect digital identities with threat detection and Zero Trust…

 

Klick Labs develops deepfake detection method focusing on vocal biomarkers

The rise in deepfake audio technology has significant threats in various domains, such as personal privacy, political manipulation, and national…

Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Most Read This Week

Featured Company

Biometrics Insight, Opinion

Digital ID In-Depth

Biometrics White Papers

Biometrics Events