In a letter to members of Congress, IBM CEO Arvind Krishna said the company would no longer make general-purpose facial recognition and analysis software, citing concerns about the technology’s use by law enforcement agencies. He clarified that IBM “firmly opposes” the use of facial recognition “for mass surveillance, racial profiling, violations of basic human rights and freedoms.” The letter also outlined various efforts the company would take in response to ongoing anti-police brutality demonstrations, such as endorsing a federal registry for police misconduct.
IBM wasn’t super specific in its announcement. However, a person familiar with the matter said that IBM will limit itself to the development of visual object detection and will no longer make APIs that could be used to power facial recognition available to outside or internal developers. The company would not comment further.
Meanwhile the next day (June 12) we have announcements from Amazon and Microsoft
Amazon and Microsoft announced on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively, moratoria on police use of their facial recognition technology, amid a call for federal regulation of the controversial technology. Amazon’s moratorium is for one year, while Microsoft said its moratorium is indefinite until laws are in place.
In a short statement, Amazon said it would continue to make Rekognition available to groups like Thorn, the International Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Marinus Analytics to help the victims of human trafficking and reunite missing children with their families. Microsoft President Brad Smith said any national law should be “grounded in human rights.”
More Information on Facial Recognition in Self-Service
What’s Going On With Facial Recognition? was last modified: July 7th, 2020 by News Editor
NEW YORK — Facial-detection technology that Amazon is marketing to law enforcement often misidentifies women, particularly those with darker skin, according to researchers from MIT and the University of Toronto.
Amazon’s website credits Rekognition for helping the Washington County Sheriff Office in Oregon speed up how long it took to identify suspects from hundreds of thousands of photo records.
Can technology finally help improve one of the biggest pain points in the game-day experience, namely waiting in line for concessions? At the Denver Broncos’ Empower Field at Mile High, a number of new technology initiatives debuted this year, all designed to improve the fan experience around concession purchases by providing more choice and streamlined checkout procedures.
While there are no hard numbers yet on the experiments, a Mobile Sports Report visit to Mile High earlier this year saw heavy use of the new technologies, which mainly include touch-screen ordering and payment systems as well as an innovative visual-recognition device to tabulate items in grab-and-go scenarios. A few quick interviews with fans at the stands got mixed reactions on whether or not the new technology actually speeded up the processes, but some stopwatch clocking showed speedy checkouts, especially those using the visual-recognition technology, where items are placed on a scanner bed which then quickly recognizes and tabulates the total on an attached payment screen.
For those of us who are now (maybe unwillingly) becoming accustomed to checking out our own items at supermarket self-checkout terminals, the Broncos’ stands that utilize the visual-recognition devices (from a company called Mashgin) are far easier to use than trying to scan a barcode for each item. At Mile High, the scanners are the perfect endpoint for a series of stands called “Drink MKT,” which are basically spaces with coolers filled with multiple beverage choices, from bottled water through multiple types of beer and other alcoholic drinks, including $100 bottles of John Elway Cabernet. At those stands fans simply walk in, choose what they want from a cooler and queue up for the scanners. When items are placed on the scanner beds the system’s cameras detect the items and generate a total bill, which is paid for by credit card on an attached terminal. Human-staff intervention is only needed to check IDs and to help fans open up the beverages before they leave the stand.
Editors note: lots of pictures included in original article
Vancouver International Airport will be first in Canada to use NEXUS facial recognition kiosk technology.
Innovative Travel Solutions announced today that their biometric kiosks have been configured to meet the requirements of the NEXUS program, a joint Canada Border Service Agency’s (CBSA) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (U.S. CBP) operated Trusted Travellers program.
BorderXpress NEXUS features ‘tap-and-go’ technology and utilizes state-of-the-art facial recognition software to verify members’ identity, replacing the old iris recognition technology.
Chris Gilliland is the Director of Innovative Travel Solutions (ITS), the innovation team at Vancouver International Airport who developed the BorderXpress technology.
Here is a link for how to use the Vancouver Facial Recognition kiosks. They are the first to deploy.
YVR’s Innovative Travel Solutions develops next generation biometric solution for Canadian trusted traveller program
ITS helps the Canada Border Services Agency modernize the NEXUS program
Richmond, B.C. October 30, 2019: Today, Innovative Travel Solutions (ITS) by Vancouver International Airport announced that their proprietary line of self-service, biometric-enabled kiosks, BorderXpress, has been configured to meet the requirements of the Canada Border Service Agency’s (CBSA) modernized NEXUS program. BorderXpress NEXUS features ‘tap-and-go’ RFID technology and utilizes state-of-the-art facial recognition software to verify members’ identity, replacing the old iris recognition technology.
“This is another big first for us—being the first Canadian airport to offer NEXUS members an enhanced and more seamless border clearance process. I know our frequent travellers that utilize NEXUS will be pleased with this modernized solution,” says Craig Richmond, President and CEO, Vancouver Airport Authority. “We are grateful for the collaborative relationship we have with our partners at the Canada Border Service Agency and to be once again chosen as the trusted partner for the first solution and rollout. We look forward to continuing to work together on the next phase to create a complete seamless journey for all NEXUS members.”
NEXUS is a joint CBSA and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (U.S. CBP) operated Trusted Traveller program designed to speed up border crossings for low-risk, pre-approved travellers into Canada and the U.S. YVR introduced 11 next generation NEXUS kiosks in October 2019, dedicated to facilitating the trusted traveller program. Using the new kiosks, NEXUS members will tap or scan their NEXUS card and capture a photo to verify their identity using facial recognition technology before proceeding to a CBSA officer for final inspection. If you have something to declare you must do so verbally, to an officer, at a clearly marked area in the customs hall after using the kiosk.
As part of the CBSA’s objective to modernize the NEXUS program, this is intended to better serve NEXUS members travelling by air as facial biometric verification provides travellers with a simplified method of being identified. This initiative aligns the NEXUS program with international trends on traveller processing and supports the CBSA’s goal to increase efficiencies without compromising security. For more information on this initiative, including instructions on how to use the new NEXUS facial verification kiosks, please visit the NEXUS Air webpage.
ITS has also sold its BorderXpress NEXUS solution to Halifax Stanfield International Airport and Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, with deployments scheduled later this year.
BorderXpress technology was developed by ITS, an independent business unit within Vancouver International Airport (YVR), named Best Airport in North America for 10 consecutive years. ITS specializes in delivering industry-leading travel technology to transform the traveller’s experience. Since 2009, ITS has sold over 1,600 kiosks at 43 airport and seaport locations around the world, helping more than 250 million passengers clear the border safely and securely.