How does facial recognition work? Face detection is necessary for security purposes. Click here for a detailed guide on face recognition meaning, advantages & disadvantages!
Biometric technologies trace back their origins over a century back. Today, it has made a comeback largely due to modern societal ills and the growing need for national security. The not-so-recent impetus was 9/11 when face recognition– the most popular in the biometric technology family saw renewed demand and rapid adoption.
If you are unversed, here’s a simple version for you by the Cambridge dictionary: “facial recognition is a technology that makes it possible for a computer to recognize a digital image of someone’s face.” Advanced technologies like AI have increased the accuracy of face recognition systems, making a case for its wider acceptance as a primary tool for security, fraud prevention, and a host of surveillance activities, among others. Owing to its growing usage, the global facial recognition market size is forecast to hit USD 8.5 billion by 2025.
Face detection technology primarily determines whether the images match the facial features of an individual. By capturing, analyzing, and subsequently comparing, the numerous patterns of an individual’s face, using facial recognition technology (FRT), the process is concluded.
The three-step process comprising i) face detection, ii) face capture, and lastly iii) face match, are the essentials even though the facial reader technology may vary.
Face identification is based on the 1:N principle, where an image match in the database confirms the identity of an individual.
The accuracy of face recognition algorithms is difficult to assess. However, according to the US-based NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology), the software used in facial recognition technologies can be evaluated based on two classes of error: false positives and false negatives.
A false positive result by the software denotes that it wrongfully considered photos of two different individuals to show the same individual. A false negative on the other hand means the software is unable to match two photos.
The application of facial recognition has surged over the years beyond unlocking the phone. From financial checks to security and much more, the recognition system now plays a pivotal and strategic role in both the private and public sectors. The uses vary but some of the most commonly observed applications include premises such as:
In a recent study to analyze how widespread is the use of facial recognition technology in different countries across government, police, airports, schools, banking, workplaces, and on buses and trains it was found that only 6 countries (among 100) had no evidence of facial recognition.
*Datawrapper automatically includes French Guiana as part of France's statistics but some factors are likely to be different here and haven't been covered in our research.
Some of the key findings comprise:
The top three countries with the most widespread facial recognition technology use are China, Russia, and the UAE.
With the surging usage of facial recognition technology in everyday life, the awareness among the masses is increasing by the day. Not surprisingly, there has been both a backlash and support for the system. To understand this better, let’s look at the pros and cons of FRT.
Face detection is the first step in face recognition but is oft mistaken and lumped together with the latter. Face detection is the ability of the software to detect if a human face is present or not. The detection process begins with the analysis of photos with algorithms designed to find a facial coordinate match. The software just looks for the image, separating it from the background.
Face recognition is the comprehensive process of comparing the image of an individual in a database to find a match. The database is built with machine learning over time using facial recognition technology.
Face detection is used in various consumer goods such as smart TVs and cameras, and activities such as marketing and advertising campaigns.
In times of dwindling trust, it is imperative to have trustworthy technology by your side. Finding a vendor of your choice should be based on an objective study of the needs. As per Gartner, most buyers’ buying decisions are influenced by three factors: price; ease of implementation, and references from clients with a similar profile.
It is however important to balance the competing demands by assessing the full range of capabilities. A good solution reduces the cost as well as the complexity of multiple vendor integrations. A facial recognition solution must be robust and qualify the following:
HyperVerge is a market leader in AI-based facial recognition technology. The recent “1: N identification” NIST rankings place HyperVerge on the leaderboard. Across all geographies, HyperVerge is ahead of its competition in accuracy. The FNMR, if any, is below 1% across races. One of the best liveness checks and device compatibility are just add-ons that favor HyperVerge.
Facial recognition, whether you like it or not, is here to stay. It is a practical and convenient way of safeguarding the public and private interests. FRT software makers are today advancing their technology consistently to provide better results in not-so-conducive environments.
Facial recognition and facial authentication, within the biometric technologies space, are the blue-eyed solutions. The inherent and multiple benefits of today’s advanced facial recognition solutions cannot be overlooked. Facial recognition supplements human decision making to make the right judgement. A clear understanding of the technology may allay many concerns that surround the technology.
How safe is facial recognition?
Facial recognition technology makes use of AI predominantly, which means your password can be hacked or stolen but not face print. This makes it safer than most identification and authentication techniques.
Is FRT prone to bias in face recognition?
Some studies have pointed to bias in face recognition, however, NIST findings suggest that there is no big difference in Asian and Caucasian faces for software developed by Asian companies.
Does facial recognition accuracy depend on external factors?
Yes, to some extent the accuracy of facial recognition may vary due to external factors like environment, background, lighting, and even age, facial hair, gender, and liveness. The good thing is that with advanced FRT software you can overcome these issues.
Who can use face recognition?
The application of facial recognition is diverse. In common parlance, it has been seen to be used by governments, public bodies, and financial institutions.
Will I breach consumer privacy and compliance laws if I deploy FRT?
Not really, however, it is best to check the local compliance laws and guidelines for the deployment of FRT.