The provincial government of Saskatchewan, Canada, is getting ready to take advantage of biometric technology to help fight identity fraud. Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) has announced that it will use facial recognition to help prevent the production of duplicate and fraudulent driver licenses.
For the province’s drivers, the measure won’t be noticeable; it’s work is entirely behind the scenes. When a resident applies for a driver license, the facial recognition system will convert her image into a biometric template, which will then be used to compare the ID document against others in the government’s database. That should help authorities to detect duplicates and prevent fraud.
With biometric driver ID systems becoming increasingly common, the province’s move is timely—and maybe even a little late; as SGI CEO Andrew Cartmell suggested in announcing the measure, the implementation of facial recognition in license issuance brings Saskatchewan into step with most of the rest of the country. Nevertheless, SGI is taking care to reassure residents that it’s fully committed to protecting their privacy, that the new biometric system is in line with privacy law, and that it’s working with the province’s Privacy Commissioner to ensure the system satisfies its standards.
August 18th, 2016 – by Alex Perala