Uber to Implement Facial Recognition for Driver Authentication in China

Uber is implementing a facial recognition system for drivers in China, the company has announced.

Uber to Implement Facial Recognition for Driver Authentication in ChinaIt’s designed to cut down on the practices of drivers’ sharing accounts or using fake accounts, issues that are apparently more commonplace in China than in other countries in which Uber operates. The unregulated taxi service is now seeking to implement spot checks using facial recognition to ensure that its drivers are who they say they are.

The system will use technology developed by Face++, the company that helped to design Alipay’s ‘Smile to Pay’ system for mPayment authentication. Drivers will enrol their facial biometrics via a selfie picture when they register, and will subsequently be prompted to upload live selfie checks to Uber periodically while on duty.

In a statement to The Verge, Uber framed the selfie check system as “a safety feature”, but the move stands somewhat at odds with Uber’s positioning on biometric security in other parts of the world. For example, in the US it has resisted regulators’ attempts to impose fingerprint background checks on Uber drivers, a move that could help to ensure passenger safety.

Source: The Verge

April 22, 2016 – by Alex Perala