Welcome to FindBiometrics’ digest of identity industry news. Here’s what you need to know about the world of digital identity and biometrics today:
Home Office Biometrics Project Delayed, New Vendor Sought: Report
The United Kingdom’s Home Office has formally delayed the delivery date of a national biometric system meant to span the country’s immigration, policing, and criminal justice systems. Work on the Home Office Biometrics project had got underway in April of 2014, and its estimated completion date has now been moved from September 30 of 2024 to March 31 of 2025. Fujitsu had been awarded a five-year contract to provide biometric matching technology in 2018, but is now expected to be replaced with another vendor by the Home Office after the project’s delays.
Worldcoin Nears $100M in Latest Funding Round
Worldcoin, the biometric crypto project co-founded by OpenAI head Sam Altman, has reportedly raised almost $100 million in a new funding round. The project uses iris biometrics to create pseudonymous digital identities for end users that allow them to access online accounts while protecting privacy; and ultimately the plan is to use the digital IDs to disburse a ‘basic income’ in the form of the Worldcoin cryptocurrency. Worldcoin had raised $3 million in 2021 and launched a $100 million crypto token sale last year. In February of this year the startup was said to be looking to raise $120 million in a new funding round.
WhatsApp Users Can Now Lock ‘Extra-special Chats’ Behind Biometrics
Users of the online messaging platform WhatsApp can now hide certain conversations in a dedicated folder that can only be accessed with a biometric scan or their device’s PIN. Meta announced the global rollout of the new “Chat Lock” feature today, calling it a great feature for people who share their phone with family members, or for “moments where someone else is holding your phone at the exact moment an extra-special chat arrives.”
Airport Biometrics Deployments in Argentina, Vietnam
A newly opened terminal at Argentina’s Ezeiza International Airport is using biometric technology from Vision-Box to speed up traveler processing. Fourteen self-service e-gates are now in place, featuring facial recognition for passenger identification. Sebastián Villar Guarino, the airport’s General Manager, said the deployment supports the Aeropuertos Argentina 2000 airport authority’s goal of providing “the best possible experience to our passengers, making Ezeiza International Airport the most modern and technologically advanced airport in Latin America.”
Vision-Box has also provided biometric airport technology to airport authorities in Vietnam, where the Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) is now bringing a face-scanning system to another of the country’s airports — Phu Bai International Airport in the province of Thua Thien-Hue. A new pilot at the airport is trialing both biometric passenger screening along with the use of chip-embedded ID cards.
TECH5 Brings Digital Student IDs to DRC
After a successful initial deployment, TECH5 and its partner Sycamore are preparing to launch their digital student ID solution across the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The companies’ solution uses TECH5’s T5-Cryptograph technology to print a code containing a given student’s encrypted face biometrics data. The smart card enables students to access university facilities and can be used as a boarding pass on student buses. It was initially launched in Kinshasa toward the end of last year, and the companies are now comfortable calling it a success and preparing for a wider rollout.
IDEX Partners With Malaysian Smart Card Specialist
IDEX Biometrics has partnered with MCS Microsystems, a Malaysia-based provider smart card and smart ID technologies. The latter has integrated IDEX sensors into fingerprint-scanning smart cards that it plans to to bring to partners in Southeast Asia, Europe, and North America in the fourth quarter of this year. MCS Managing Director Chas Yap said the new card solution is “cost-efficient, long-lasting, has superior biometric performance, and addresses key business challenges” for his firm’s customers.
HID’s Lumidigm V-Series Reaches PAD Level 2
HID’s Lumidigm V-Series fingerprint readers have attained compliance with ISO/IEC 30107-3 Presentation Attack Detection Level 2 standards, detecting and rejecting 100 percent of all attempts at authentication using fake fingerprints in testing by the iBeta group. ‘Spoofing’ attempts entailed the use of silicon, latest, and other sophisticated, 3D artefacts to simulate real fingerprints. HID Global is known for its multispectral imaging technology, which is capable of sensing not only a fingerprint’s surface, but also its sub-dermal layers.
Digital ID Startup Gets UK Smart Grant
London-based EarthID, in partnership with City University of London, has been awarded a UK Smart Grant to fuel the development of its decentralized, self-sovereign identity platform, a device-agnostic digital ID wallet called Space-Wallet. “Our partnership with City, University of London will enable us to develop a cutting-edge solution that will prevent fraud and provide a seamless user experience,” explained EarthID CEO Priya Guliani.
May 15, 2023 – by Alex Perala