Welcome to FindBiometrics’ digest of identity industry news. Here’s what you need to know about the world of digital identity and biometrics today:
Inviting Comment, NIST Plans Workshop On Digital Identity Guidelines
The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has published draft guidelines concerning the management of digital identities online, and will welcome public comment on the draft until March 24 of next year. On January 12, NIST will host a virtual workshop dedicated to its “Digital Identity Guidelines” (NIST Special Publication 800-63 Revision 4), with registration for the event now open. As Homeland Security Today reports, “a significant portion” of NIST’s efforts on this front will involve exploring alternative methods of identity verification. “This draft update reinforces that NIST’s guidelines have always allowed for alternatives to facial recognition as well as appropriate and fair use of facial recognition technologies and that NIST will be more fully defining these alternatives in the final guidelines,” said the Office of Management and Budget’s deputy director for management, Jason Miller.
Abu Dhabi Airport Trials Curb-to-Gate Biometrics
Biometric passenger processing technology is now being trialed at Abu Dhabi International Airport, where facial recognition systems have been deployed and activated at select baggage drop stations, immigration checkpoints, and boarding gates. The technology has been delivered by IDEMIA and SITA, in collaboration with domestic partner NEXT50. “Once the project is fully realised, the airport will be the only airport in the region with biometric solutions implemented across all customer touchpoints,” explained NEXT50 CEO Ibrahim Al Mannaee.
Tamil Nadu Requires Aadhaar for Social Subsidies
The Indian state of Tamil Nadu has announced that effective immediately, social benefits will only be distributed to those who possess an Aadhaar ID. The move further cements the country’s biometric national ID program as an essential proof of citizenship and identity for all Indians.
Lawyers Wrangle Over Plaintiff Representation in Clearview BIPA Case
Lawyers continue to fight over who gets to represent plaintiffs in a proposed class action lawsuit against Clearview AI. Scott Drury of Drury Legal had defected from his former firm, Loevy & Loevy, and attempted to take the BIPA case’s plaintiffs with him, but last month the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois issued a ruling confirming that Loevy & Loevy represent the putative class. Now, Drury has filed a motion for clarification arguing that Loevy & Loevy does not represent any named plaintiffs, whereas Drury does; and that if the case isn’t certified as a class action lawsuit, Drury would be the retained counsel of those plaintiffs. As a compromise, he wants to be allowed to represent three specific plaintiffs, while Loevy & Loevy gets the prospective class of plaintiffs.
Researchers’ Alternative Approach ‘Surpasses’ CNN-based Facial Recognition Models
Researchers at Queen Mary University of London have devised an alternative approach to facial recognition that ditches convolutional neural networks (CNNs) for vision transformers (ViTs). Detailed in a paper that has been pre-published on arXiv, the researchers lay out how the ViT approach splits a face image into disparate ‘patches’ that can be scanned by a transformer trained on a deep learning model, calling their particular solution ‘part fViT’. Speaking to TechXplore, one of the researchers asserted that the use of ViT technology to train a facial recognition baseline “already surpasses most state-of-the-art face recognition methods.”
Innovatrics Launches Cloud-based API
Innovatrics has announced that its remote identity verification platform is now available as a cloud-based API. “With our API in the cloud, our clients can skip infrastructure set-up and maintenance,” explained Daniel Ferak, the director of Innovatrics’ Digital Onboarding Toolkit business unit. “Moreover, they can conveniently scale their solution up or down depending on their current needs.” The news comes after Innovatrics’ announcement of a new biometric enrolment SDK last month.
Zerify Builds Client Roster
Zerify has acquired another new client in 21st Century Marketing Group, a New York-based provider of health benefits, insurance, warranty offers, and other benefits packages. The latter will use Zerify Meet, a secure video conferencing system that features support for biometric authentication, to protect client calls and secure the enrolment of employees and members into online benefits portals. The news comes after Zerify secured an agreement with the Nashville record label “The Service” earlier this month.
VU Integrates Microsoft Entra Verified ID
Argentina-based cybersecurity firm VU Inc. has integrated Microsoft Entra Verified ID, a decentralized identity system, into its platform. Microsoft Entra Verified ID is designed to let organizations issue digital credentials that can be easily verified using a digital wallet while protecting the end user’s privacy. In VU’s case, the solution has been tied to the VU Identity Card, a digital credential that offers support for biometric authentication. Meanwhile, VU has announced the appointment of Stephen Maloney, a former Acuant executive, as a Senior Strategic Advisor.
Irish Gang Uses Face ID to Drain Bank Accounts
An Irish gang is reportedly hacking mobile authentication systems in order to empty victims’ bank accounts, according to report from the Independent. The typical modus operandi goes like this: criminals will follow a target, usually at a man at a pub or club, and will try to spy over his shoulder to get his phone’s PIN code. They then set about stealing the phone, and once they have it, they use the PIN to access the device’s facial recognition settings, and swap the victim’s face with one of their own. From there, they use biometric authentication to access any banking apps they can find. Irish police say they are in the midst of a months-long investigation, and that the gang has already robbed a hundred victims.
Dec. 19, 2022 – by Alex Perala