Welcome to FindBiometrics’ digest of identity industry news. Here’s what you need to know about the world of digital identity and biometrics today:
Revised Colorado Privacy Act Clarifies Biometrics Rules
The Colorado Attorney General’s office has published a revised draft of the proposed Colorado Privacy Act rules, with changes stemming from public comment. One change has removed a requirement for data controllers to draft privacy notices about processing purposes; another removed a provision that required controllers to obtain consent before processing biometrics or personal data generated from a photograph or audio or video recording. It also clarifies that biometric identifiers are only considered as such when they’re being used for the purpose of identifying an individual, which should help to protect companies that use biometrics for things like virtual try-on services.
Laxton Urges National Elections Commission to Amend Voter Registration Plan
Laxton Group is now ‘strongly advising’ Liberia’s National Elections Commission to use laptops in the country’s biometric voter registration project, instead of tablets as had originally been planned, according to a report from the Daily Observer. The company has been in talks with the Commission since the latter’s oversight body, the Public Procurement Concession Commission, had rejected the Commission’s first choice of vendors, a consortium led by the Chinese firm Ekemp, last month. Now, Laxton’s insistence on using laptops instead of tablets could create awkwardness for the political stakeholders in the project, as the use of tablets had been one of the requirements for vendors bidding on the contract. Indeed, Ekemp had challenged the Commission’s selection of Laxton, partly on the basis of its failure to use a tablet in its bid.
Some Big BIPA Developments
U.S. District Judge James Robart in Seattle has offered a ruling clarifying the meaning of an important provision in Illinois’s Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA). Section 15(c) says companies must not “sell, lease, trade, or otherwise profit from a person’s or a customer’s biometric identifier or biometric information.” In a lawsuit over Amazon’s use of an IBM dataset to improve its facial recognition technology by reducing demographic bias, Amazon argued that it did not obtain a “pecuniary benefit” from its use of IBM’s biometric data. Judge Robart said that section 15(c) “prohibits the commercial dissemination of biometric data for some sort of gain, whether pecuniary or not,” and determined that “”received some benefit from the biometric data through increased sales of its improved products.” On that reasoning, the judge determined that Amazon will have to face this part of the lawsuit against it.
The Five Guys burger chain is the latest high-profile company to be hit with a proposed class action lawsuit under Illinois’s Biometric Information Privacy Act. The lawsuit stems from Five Guys’ use of a fingerprint-scanning time and attendance tracking system for employees.
Mitek has lost its bid to move a BIPA case to arbitration in a Seventh Circuit court ruling. The case revolves around Mitek’s work with its customer HyreCar, a company whose platform is aimed at connecting car owners with individuals who wish to rent cars for delivery and taxi services. HyreCar uses Mitek’s biometric identity verification service to confirm the identities of lease applicants; the plaintiff argues that Mitek uses his biometric information without his consent.
Web3 Identity Startup Raises $2 Million
Web3 digital identity startup Nametag has raised $2 million in a seed funding round led by GSRV and OKX Ventures, with contributions from Coinbase Ventures, Alchemy Ventures, Continue Capital, Mask Network, and Project Galaxy, and angel investors Cryptodog, Spencer Yang, and Wesley Fei. Nametag’s platform uses NFTs to add certain badges to users’ online profiles. The badges are meant to provide information about a given user’s online activity, such as video game rankings or holdings of digital assets.
ROC Impresses in NIST PFT Testing
Rank One Computing has attained impressive results in its first-ever submission of its fingerprint recognition algorithm for evaluation by the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Proprietary Fingerprint Template (PFT) Test. It was in the top three rankings in every category, with number-one rankings in tests assessing efficiency and sensor interoperability, and in the IARPA Nail-to-Nail evaluations. “ROC is extremely proud to put the U.S. on top of these AI/ML capabilities,” commented CEO Scott Swann. Read our full story.
Daon Brings IdentityX to ForgeRock Identity Cloud
Daon and ForgeRock have extended their partnership, with the former’s IdentityX platform being integrated into the ForgeRock Identity Cloud. The integration means that ForgeRock customers can add Daon’s multi-factor authentication technology – including support for multimodal biometrics – to any ForgeRock Identity Cloud workflow. The news comes after Daon first tailored its biometric platform for compatibility with the ForgeRock Identity Platform in 2020. Read our full story.
December 22, 2022 – by Alex Perala
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