More Than Money at Stake in IARPA’s Face Recognition Prize Challenge

In an effort to push ahead the state of the art, government authorities have announced a Face Recognition Prize Challenge.More Than Money at Stake in IARPA's Face Recognition Prize Challenge

The contest is being organized by the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), a division of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. Participants are invited to submit their algorithm software for testing at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which will run it on sequestered images of “non-cooperative subjects”. This is an area of serious concern in the wake of a recent NIST report outlining the shortcomings of facial recognition technology when applied to video feeds of such non-cooperating subjects – individuals who aren’t posing for the camera, in other words.

IARPA’s interest in advancing technology in this area reflects what may be a growing strategic interest on the organization’s part in biometric technology more broadly, with IARPA having launched an anti-spoofing research program last summer.

Registration for the Face Recognition Prize Challenge closes on June 15th, and judging will take place in September. Cash prizes will be offered in three categories: $5,000 for the winner in “One-to-many identification speed”, $20,000 for “One-to-one verification accuracy”, and $25,000 for “One-to-many identification accuracy”. Of course, the prizes’ value could pale in comparison to what the winners’ could take in terms of industry recognition and ensuing contract wins.

May 11, 2017 – by Alex Perala