Facial Recognition: Innovative Technology, Sophisticated Threats

Technologies are changing with great speed, and now, after some period of adapting to the unusual reality, we continue meeting new trends and solutions. In this article, MBS Tech's professional team would like to introduce facial recognition from the two aspects - general information and security issues.

Facial Recognition Becoming Mainstream

Facial recognition is among the biometric technologies to gain tremendous pace. All the software web giants (Google, Apple, etc.) investigate and implement advanced innovations and the latest-generation algorithms of image recognition and face analysis. This technology has also transformed the security approach worldwide.

Facial recognition is becoming an incredibly popular technology to secure payments. Experts' reports say that it's just a beginning, and in several years, the users of software-based facial recognition will be counted in billions, not in millions. The technology has even greater investment potential as experts predict considerable growth in face recognition markets by 2025. Obviously, for such a trendy and smart solution, cyber security issues must be a high priority and a matter of serious concern.

How Does Facial Recognition Work?

Facial recognition is a kind of biometric technology based on Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), and deep learning. Explaining in the most general way, it serves to identify, analyze, and validate a person’s identity by scanning their face. It has a database where the technology stores facial details and then compares patterns captured by the software's sensors to the available resources. Prior to the comparing step, it converts the face into digital data using algorithms. So, there are three main steps facial recognition consists of:

  • face detection in images and videos;
  • face capture - transforming a face into digital data;
  • face match - a verification step.

Facial recognition is widely utilized at airports, banks, law enforcement, retail, hotels, the health industry and other places or spheres where and when people's identity is crucial. 

Why Is Facial Recognition So Widespread?

Facial biometrics continues to be the preferred biometric technology. Facial recognition represents a simple, easy-to-use, and fast solution providing us with comfort to conduct financial and other operations securely or verify our identity when needed. The worldwide recognition and rapid growth in the use of this technology are also boosted by Apple's effective FaceID.

With each year, facial recognition improves significantly. According to the tests carried out by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the best face identification algorithm in 2020 had an error rate of just 0.08% (one out of 1000 images) compared to 4.1% for 2014.

However, the issues of data privacy and security aren't straightforward in this biometric software. There is no doubt that this technology has many advantages, but you should be aware of its risks too. As with any other successful, prospective, widespread digital technology, facial recognition attracts malicious actors' attention too.

Facial Recognition Companies Hacked

With advanced comfort and a serious impact on our lives, this innovative technology also brings many cyber security issues and threats. So, what if a facial recognition company is hacked?

That question has many answers based on real examples from recent years' experience. Hackers attacked Verkada, a well-known surveillance and facial recognition camera company. They got access to live streams of hospitals, police departments, prisons and schools, using Verkada's services, from all over the world.

If a facial recognition company doesn't adopt the most efficient cyber security measures and practices, the databases with all information stored, live streams, and access to cameras can be in the wrong hands.

What Helps Secure Biometric Authentication?

Future successful identification and authentication solutions should utilize all aspects of biometrics. Adopting a multi-method biometric strategy (facial recognition, fingerprints, voice and behavioural indicators) can ensure more secure identity verification.

And the main preventive measure is up-to-date, robust cyber security architecture and practices as well as compliance with stringent data privacy regulations. Reputable cyber security professionals like MBS Tech can help ensure the necessary level of defence.



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