Data compliance start-up raises $11m investment after another funding round

Data compliance start-up raises $11m investment after another funding round

Securing another funding round led by Molten Ventures, data startup Worldr has reached $11m in seed investment.

Worldr surfaced in 2019 with zero trust architecture for high-profile communications platforms like Whatsapp, to help solve data compliance issues in the current climate of data breaches, geopolitical tensions and strict regulatory frameworks on privacy.

Worldr is pathing the way for data sovereignty when enterprises share information over communication and collaboration platforms, such as, Microsoft Teams, WhatsApp, Outlook and Slack, which has attracted funding help from Molten Ventures in its latest funding round. The company has also received funding from IQ Capital and Playfair Capital.

According to the latest statistics, this response is needed to combat an exponential rise in cyberattacks on organisations that occurred 31% more frequently in 2021 than in 2020.

The Worldr architecture offers enterprise-level security and compliance by storing all communications and files within the customer’s own environment. Bypassing a third-party provider’s own servers allows organisations to retain full ownership of their enterprise data, so employees can continue using the platforms they love without the added risk to their data.

The end solution will be a software-agnostic architecture that will operate to secure an organisation’s entire data environment to maintain data sovereignty and compliance, concerns with using Whatsapp in the workplace. Workplaces are curbing the use of private messaging platforms that violate data privacy laws.

Fines worth $1.8 billion have been issued across 16 US financial institutions but Wordlr’s data proposition enables businesses to enhance their open communication channels with the customer and stakeholders while balancing SEC, GDPR and FINRA compliance standards and retaining data privacy.

Max Buchan, CEO at Worldr, commented: “Data sovereignty has never been more important. The increase in cyberattacks, data localisation requirements, and scrutiny from regulators mean that it is no longer enough to blindly trust that collaboration platforms are keeping business communications secure and compliant. Companies rightfully want control of their data to protect themselves against operational, reputational and regulatory risk. This has not only fuelled demand for our zero trust architecture for Microsoft Teams, but we are also being challenged to apply this solution across an organisation’s entire software environment. This funding will be critical to helping us further this mission and scale to meet the demand”.

Leonora Ross-Skinner, Investor at Molten Ventures said: “The move towards zero trust and data sovereignty is becoming critical for any entity which deals with sensitive information. Worldr’s unique product set optimises for privacy, security and data protection with seamless integration into existing enterprise software. Crucially, with Worldr, data is controlled by the enterprise itself, marking an incredibly important step forward in data sovereignty.

“Having made several investments in the cyber and privacy space we really look forward to working with Max, his world-class team and our esteemed fellow investors to build a category-leading company with the fundamentals of security, privacy and data protection at its core.”

Worldr is headquartered with an office in New York to support the company’s on-going relations with Microsoft.

It plans to outreach to the Middle East, with a base already being set up in Dubai.

India government assign Aadhaar digital ID to newborns

India government assign Aadhaar digital ID to newborns

Indian citizens will now be assigned a unique digital ID number from birth, in further expansion of the Aadhaar registry scheme.

A birth certificate is one of the most primitive identity documents that an individual will obtain in their lives; there is indication that India is looking to streamline and digitalise the birth registration process by adding people from birth to death in its biometric national registry, Aadhaar.

The ID cards – which were first issued by India’s then prime minister, Narendra Modi, in 2014 – have been an asset to manage better, but more secure access to government services and benefits for those eligible as well as use in everyday life to apply for jobs etc.

As children are not eligible to use biometrics, from birth under 5’s will be issued with a temporary card which will be made permanent after the child is 5+. At the age of 18, an individual is required to re-register. While 16 states have currently adopted the Aadhaar ID system for birth registrations, which started accelerating in June, India’s government has high hopes that all 28 could begin issuing digital ID at birth while keeping birth certificates, to ensure citizens are able to access government services throughout their lives.

The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) issues permanent Aadhaar ID to residents only, providing single offline or online verification across the country. Citizens may authenticate and confirm their identity offline and electronically once they have enrolled onto the registry and any duplicate entries have been removed, using biographic and/or biometric searches. This saves time in improving the government’s capability to accurately deliver benefits services to citizens and taking people off the registry when they die.

The Aadhaar platform also has been praised for providing accurate and clear information about how the government delivers its services. Aadhaar cards issued to under 5’d will use the parents’ demographic information linked with their digital ID, but biometric data can be collected and recorded when the citizen turns five and again at 15.

The changes will improve the efficiency of the scheme that has been running to ensure everybody has access to social government support, catering most for poor or vulnerable sections of society. The UIDAI also oversees ensuring that false or doctored digital Identity duplicates are taken out of circulation.

The UIDAI’s dashboard indicates that 1.34 billion citizens are registered on the system while the population size is 1.41 billion people.

Veridos and INCM deliver next generation of modern ePassports to Latvia

Veridos and INCM deliver next generation of modern ePassports to Latvia

Veridos, a leading global provider of identity solutions, will deliver 1.25 million latest-generation ePassports to Latvia in cooperation with the Portuguese state printer INCM. In addition to the documents, the order from the Office of Citizenship and Migration Affairs (OCMA) also includes a central personalization system, as well as service and maintenance over a five-year period.

This latest project extends a long-standing partnership between Latvia and Veridos, dating back to 1991. The bid to deliver 1.25 million electronic passports submitted by Veridos, the joint German venture between Giesecke+Devrient and the Bundesdruckerei, and INCM, the Portuguese Mint and Official Printing Office, beat the competition on both quality and price. Thanks to the use of CLIP-ID color personalization on polycarbonate data pages, the passports boast exceptionally high color fidelity and simplify visual verification. Latvia is the latest in a growing number of countries to use Veridos’ ultra-modern technology to enable its citizens to travel comfortably and securely.

Awarding the contract to the lead company Veridos and its partner INCM will enable technologically-advanced Latvia to benefit from the highest security standards and innovation levels in the field of electronic ID documents. The country is thus following the international trend of using color photos on polycarbonate pages. Veridos has once again opted for a solution from IAI for the personalization equipment used on site. This unique color solution has been successfully deployed in other regions.

“Latvia and Veridos have a close and long-standing partnership, so we are very pleased that we will be able to continue to work together in the future and provide real added value to citizens via our solutions,” says Marc-Julian Siewert, CEO of Veridos. “We are proud to have such a technologically advanced country as a partner. This partnership also demonstrates that our products are truly state-of-the-art and competitively priced.” ​

(Image: Youril)

Harder rules over police biometrics come into effect in Scotland

Harder rules over police biometrics come into effect in Scotland

Stricter rules introduced in Scotland will now govern the police’s use of facial recognition technologies to carry out stop searches and arrests, which often lead to bias and discriminatory behaviour.

The new guidelines restrict the police’s power to conduct “voluntary” facial recognition tests on the public, which instead critics have argued are invasive.

The new code of practice also sets out standards over how biometric data can be acquired, held, used to aid criminal investigations. It condemns routine police checks unless a suspect has been convicted for a crime; their biometric data can be stored on the national police database in the event that they reoffend. Biometrics can also be used to exonerate suspects, which search engine database companies, such as Clearview AI have been trialling.

Biometric data encompasses personal information taken from DNA, fingerprints, iris scans, voice profiles, and facial recognition.

The Commission was appointed to prepare the statutory Code of Practice, which took effect on 16 November, 2022.

The use of biometric technology in policing has merit to attain full DNA profiles to secure convictions however as a tool deployed in routine policing, these technologies can be intrusive and compromise privacy standards.

The Scottish Police must adhere to 11 guiding principles which include ethics, privacy, lawful authority and respect for human right. However many recommendations have been issued for the “Scottish Government to work with Police Scotland and the Scottish Police Authority to consider legislative provision in relation to the retention and use of photographic images by the police”. A bid to establish cyber kiosks as a case study was firmly rejected in a report in September 2019.

Scotland’s Biometric Commissioner, Dr Brian Plastow, who applauds the achievements using facial biometrics said: “It is important to strike the right balance between allowing Police Scotland to do what is required to keep people safe and to protect the human rights of the public. Scotland is the first country in the world to have a national code of practice which gives guidance to the police on how biometric data and related forensic technologies can be used. It promotes good practice, transparency and accountability by setting out standards for professional decision-making while matching the needs and responsibilities of policing with important human rights safeguards. Its implementation should enhance confidence in our criminal justice system”. He is commissioning two case studies to evaluate the treatment of children and vulnerable people in custody.

Challenges for government’s One Login

Challenges for government’s One Login

Since launching, the government’s One Login identity verification service has been a successful initiative to digitally secure public access to government services and sites.

One year on in August, Natalie Jones, Director of Digital Identity at Government Digital Service argued that One Login had evolved substantially and that validating someone’s identity to access services across government was largely a “solved problem”.

Further ahead in the rollout of One Login, different departments are debating where One Login should be leveraged and what changes could be made, according to HMRC Chief Technology and Design Officer, Tom Skaylycz.

Giving his perspective at the Think Digital Identity for Government conference, he shared he closely works with the Government Digital Service which is in charge of One Login where a transition is being made to replace the Government Gateway.

He suggested that One Login could optimise offline customer support capabilities when users experience a technical issue using the service. The customer’s experience should not be assumed. “This will move the offering beyond the ‘happy path’ only, which was a failing in the retired Verify service” he said.

The first departments to trial One Login were the HM Land Registry and Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency but the rollout has been deliberately gradual.

Challenges of the system that need to be rectified by individual departments include verification and authentication for organisations and access permissions for delegated third-party authorities.



Privacy and security should be guiding principles of NHS federated data platform, says National Data Guardian

Privacy and security should be guiding principles of NHS federated data platform, says National Data Guardian

Dr Nicola Byrne, the National Data Guardian for health and adult social care in England, has spoken out about her high expectations for the planned NHS federated data platform to abide by strong privacy and security frameworks.

However, according to the Guardian, the new data platform for England, which will incorporate millions of personal medical records into one of the biggest health data platforms, is to be launched without seeking new patient consent.

NHS England issued a tender notice earlier in the year to kick-start the provision of the new patient data ecosystem, valued around £240 million. The chosen supplier should enhance the integration of systems to enable trusted data sharing within the NHS, as well as with patients.

The brief has been stated many times: to build a secure ecosystem of data technologies and enable services across the NHS in England. In August 2022, members of Digital Health were invited to participate in a Networks debate on the Federated Data Platform, along with other key healthcare figures. 

Although the government has been excluded from these talks, data had a major role in reshaping medical care in the country’s fight to contain coronavirus in 2020 and 2021, when the virus was most prevalent. The NHS was the focal-point of a huge effort to share data relating to the virus with the government, public, Office of National Statistics, and within the NHS and social care ecosystem.

Nicola reiterated in her blogpost that the NHS was the backbone of the country which since it inception in 1948 has “amassed comprehensive cradle-to-grave information about tens of millions of us”. She justifies introducing this system and unlocking the power of data whilst preserving the public’s trust.

Data must be keep confidential and never treated carelessly, as its “collection is founded on our trust”, she says.

Nicola Bryne said: “The value of our data will only be realised if it can be organised in such a way that the NHS is able to use it well to improve treatments, services and ultimately our health and care” however follows her comments with a reminder that making data insecurely accessible to the public would be damaging to public trust.

The importance of introducing a federated system is to “provide real-time, reliable insights to those making decisions about how care is planned and delivered”, offering quicker diagnoses for patients over a secure digital network and sharing data with other healthcare professionals.

She explained her version:

“Improving timely, meaningful access to high-quality data, visualised in a way that supports more informed decision-making by those empowered to use it, is key to improving health and care access, outcomes, and experience for all”.

She warns of the common failings of previous initiatives. Nicola elaborated on the work of her team and advisory board that continue to ensure the system mitigates privacy concerns, in accordance with the NHS’ core values. She has called for the NHS England to listen to patients’ and professionals’ views in a research group to determine what next steps should be made, and then adapt plans.

She writes: “I have advised that the programme must be transparent and always strive to provide clear, easy-to-understand explanations of the platform, what data it will use, how it will use it, the benefits of the programme, and, just as importantly, the risks”.

In a shock move, the contract may be awarded to American firm, Palantir, whose Chairman is a supporter of Donald Trump. The company is also accused of working with border forces, spies and police. The contract could be signed off by Heath Secretary, Steve Barclay in the coming weeks, however the NHS refutes this. The NHS says that companies can continue to express interest in January ,with the tender expected to begin in summer 2023.

TECH5 integrates IDVoice speaker recognition technology of ID R&D with T5-Digital ID

TECH5 integrates IDVoice speaker recognition technology of ID R&D with T5-Digital ID

TECH5, a leading innovator in the field of biometrics and digital identity management, today announced the integration of their T5-Digital ID with IDVoice®, the AI-based speaker recognition product from ID R&D. With the addition of IDVoice, T5-Digital ID now includes three market-leading NIST-ranked biometric modalities: face, fingerprint, and voice. The combination enables tri-modal biometric capture and liveness detection, digital ID issuance, and mobile authentication in support of use cases that demand the highest levels of flexibility and security.

T5-Digital ID performs contactless capture of all three biometrics using a mobile device and stores them in a T5-Cryptograph—a digital container for high-density storage of encrypted identity data that can be printed or digitally displayed and then scanned with a mobile device, and decrypted to biometrically verify the identity of the user. The innovative technology combination paves the way for a variety of use cases that demand offline biometric verification.

IDVoice was chosen for its powerful feature set as well as its superior accuracy, as demonstrated in several recent algorithm challenges. It ranked first in the Short Duration Speaker Verification Challenge (SdSV),i which specifically tests performance in the microphone channel. It also demonstrated strong performance in the telephone channel in the NIST Speaker Recognition Evaluation. IDVoice offers many useful features including language independence, advanced voice activity detection for improved speech processing, and speaker diarization for isolation of a specific speaker’s audio stream.

Rahul Parthe, Co-founder, CTO, and Chairman of TECH5 said: “We are delighted to announce the enhanced accuracy and flexibility of multi-modal T5-Digital ID, with features for voice contactless capture, mobile verification, and authentication enabled by ID R&D’s top-ranked voice biometrics and liveness detection, in combination with contactless capture technologies of TECH5″.

“Speaker recognition enables T5-Digital ID to support many new use cases, such as strengthened biometric verification of a customer for high-value transactions, or as an alternative authentication method when facial recognition is not feasible. Our strategic partnership with ID R&D is driving the development of unique technology solutions that allow mobile phones to serve as trusted tools for highly secure biometrics-based verification.”

By partnering with TECH5, ID R&D can further expand its presence in regions where TECH5 has already acquired a deep understanding of local markets and their specific needs. The companies expect to collaborate initially in Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, where together they will offer flexible and robust solutions to new use cases in strong demand.

Alexey Khitrov, CEO and Co-Founder of ID R&D added: “We are proud to have such a strong business relationship with TECH5, and eager to jointly pursue opportunities for their ground-breaking solution”.

“As speech becomes an increasingly popular interface, voice biometrics are playing a bigger role in helping secure identity while maximising convenience and choices for users, and so we’re very pleased to contribute our expertise and technology towards realising this shared vision.”

TECH5 also plans to integrate IDVoice with its T5-ABIS identification platform, which currently leverages face, fingerprint, and iris recognition for national-level large-scale ID projects. “We see emerging opportunities for voice recognition technologies around the world. The integration of T5-ABIS with IDVoice will result in a uniquely powerful platform for foundational ID projects,” commented Mr. Parthe.

AuthenticID integrates with Ping Identity’s DaVinci

AuthenticID integrates with Ping Identity’s DaVinci

AuthenticID announced a new integration with Ping Identity, the intelligent identity solution for the enterprise, leveraging PingOne DaVinci, a no-code identity orchestration service. The partnership will allow users of DaVinci to integrate AuthenticID’s identity-proofing solution to verify government-issued IDs with 99%+ accuracy and match a selfie image to the ID for more enhanced biometric authentication.

AuthenticID joins a growing network of technology partners developing integrations with DaVinci through the Ping Identity Global Technology Partner Program. Partner solutions that integrate with DaVinci deliver an improved customer experience in a fraction of the time, through easy drag-and-drop design of digital user journeys across multiple applications and ecosystems.

AuthenticID’s Identity Proofing and Fraud Prevention solution is driven by patented AI and machine learning technology that includes over 2,000 unique computer vision data models that can automatically validate an ID document – in seconds.

Bill Hurtado, VP of Channel Partnerships at AuthenticID said: “The fraud landscape is changing rapidly and becoming more complex and it is our goal to help clients not only mitigate that fraud but provide friction-free experiences when onboarding and authenticating customers”.

“We are delighted to become an integration partner with Ping Identity and together, provide trusted identity management solutions for clients worldwide.”

“Ping Identity is committed to expanding our technology partner ecosystem to deliver better, more frictionless customer experiences,” said Loren Russon, the SVP of product management at Ping Identity. “Our partnership with AuthenticID leverages DaVinci’s seamless orchestration to ensure dynamic user journeys are delivered quickly and efficiently at every stage of the user journey.”

CBP halts use of passport stamps

CBP halts use of passport stamps

Customs and Border Protection is no longer issuing entry stamps on passports for foreign travellers entering the U.S., in an effort to further facilitate “borderless”, streamlined travel. The policy will be implemented at other ports of entry across the U.S.

Previously passport stamps have been utilised to manage border entry into the U.S. as well as mandatory document checks, such as visa, and the I-94 system.

Once this process was digitalised to electronic versions of 1-94, the stamp was the only physical security feature used in the traveller entry process. The physical ID process will be fully changed to provide passengers with an electronic 1-94.

The stamp has advantages to pinpoint the exact time of a traveller’s arrival in the U.S, the port of entry they used, class of entry and permitted length of stay.

While the CBP plans a complete transition to the use of the electronic 1-94, which will see the demise of stamps, currently the law states that genuine foreign passports affixed with the entry stamp are valid to be used as proof of identity and employment status. The entry passport stamp has duel value for federal and state agencies too tin determining what benefits foreign employees are entitled to, not only as a proof of identification.





ID Week Europe 2023: First 50 speaker drop!

ID Week Europe 2023: First 50 speaker drop!

Each year we gather a stellar line-up of identity thought leaders, many with decades of experience in the industry, to pave the future for faster and more seamless identity services.

Our sessions, including panels, keynotes, roundtables and presentations, are designed to share road-tested insights, ideas and expertise. So we’re thrilled to announce the first 50 names taking to the iconic stages at Identity Week Europe 2023.

In a brand-new bigger venue, we will be welcoming over 3,000 attendees. Celebrate our move to Amsterdam now with 60% off tickets, and as ever, we offer free access for government and public sector individuals, plus for the first time, finance and banking professionals can too!

Build those essential business relationships face-to-face and eliminate email exhaustion as Identity Week is the number #1 event for premium networking experiences that lead to fruitful partnerships and use studies across Europe.

250 strong, the Identity Week Europe exhibition is our global flagship showcase of cutting-edge tech solutions to authenticating human identity. Whether via a secure credential, biometric, or online/digital identity solution.

Exclusive to premium ticket holders, access in-depth roundtables and engage in dynamic, intimate discussions led by some of the brightest minds in identity.

Following the huge success of our start-up village in 2022, we’re upgrading to a start-up city complete with 100 innovative start-ups working in the identity space. Meet the teams behind the future of identity.

Lastly, at the end of Day 1, our expo floor transforms into a swish hosting space to hold the networking party to end all other networking parties! Enjoy live entertainment, drinks – here’s another chance to make great connections!

Join the event to hear these speakers and many more on 13-14 June 2023 at the RAI Exhibition Centre.

Alison McDowell, Co-founder and Director, Beruku Identity

Andreas Wolf, Principal Scientist Biometrics, Bundesdruckerei GmbH

Arif Mamedov. President and CEO, Regula Forensics Inc.

Asmae Lotfi, Product Owner Customer Identity Domain, KLM

Catherine Fankhauser, Director of Identity Security Solutions, SICPA

Christoffer Bonn, CTO, Finnish Immigration Service

Claire Maslen, CMO, Consult Hyperion

Danielle Haasjes-Versluijs, Document Expert, Ministry of Justice and Security, Netherlands Government

David Palmer, Blockchain Lead, Vodafone Business

Dominic Wolbers, Document Expert, Ministry of Justice and Security, Netherlands Government

Gabriel Marquie, Senior Manager Digital Identity, IATA

Gian Battista, Head of Payments, Intesa Sanpaolo

Henk Marsman, Digital Identity Thinker

Ivan Djordjevic, Principal Security Advisor, Salesforce

Louise Cole, Head of Customer Experience and Facilitation, IATA

Martin Sandren, Product Leader, IKEA

Michiel van der Veen, Director of Innovation, RvIG

Tony Allen, CEO, ACCS

Vincent Gourmelen, Government Marketing Director, Linxens

View the rest of this incredible line-up here

Emirates signs landmark biometric data agreement

Emirates signs landmark biometric data agreement

In collaboration with the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs in Dubai (GDRFA), Emirates airline is now offering international travellers the opportunity to speed up their airport experience by consenting to the use of biometric data.

The agreement was signed by His Excellency Lieutenant General Mohamed Ahmed Al Marri, Director General of GDRFA in Dubai, and Adel Al Redha, Emirates’ Chief Operating Officer, in the presence of several senior officials from both sides.

The first agreement of its kind globally, the strategic partnership between GDRFA and Emirates is a cooperative effort to further improve the innovative and digitally focused travel experience of Dubai visitors. The agreement improves passenger traffic procedures inside Dubai International Airport Terminal 3 and ensures a faster and more efficient airport experience for travellers transferring to connecting flights, as well as those who arrive in Dubai as their final destination.

Commenting on how the agreement will develop best-in-class services for travellers, His Excellency Lieutenant-General Mohammed Al-Marri said: “Dubai is one of the world’s most aspirational destinations, and 2022 has already seen more than 8 million tourists arrive to the city. We continue to support our key partners with best-in-class services as we strive for excellence, and innovation in positioning Dubai as the world’s leading business hub and tourism destination”.

Highlighting the importance and value of this agreement, Adel Al Redha said: “Emirates continually invests to improve customer experience and we thank the GDFRA for extending the bridges of cooperation, communication and coordination to add value to Emirates’ services and allow our international passengers to Fly Better.”

By using biometric recognition technologies and the GDRFA pre-populated biometric database to identify travellers at multiple points in the airport, travellers will be able to breeze through Dubai International Airport Terminal 3 Check-In, Lounges, Boarding and Immigration at high-speed as the AI systems recognise their unique facial features and will link to their passport for instant identity verification. A privilege previously only enjoyed by UAE residents and GCC nationals, international passengers will be able to avail of the service in 2023 by providing official consent in a couple of clicks through the Emirates app, at Emirates self check-in kiosks, or in person at Emirates check-in desks.

Italy bans facial recognition until new law introduced

Italy bans facial recognition until new law introduced

Italy’s Data Protection Agency issued a blanket ban on all uses of facial recognition on Monday, but exempting its use to manage crime and prosecute or exonerate suspects.

Facial biometrics will not be permitted until a new law is passed or at the earliest, the end of 2023 or early 2024.

The statement read:

“The moratorium stems from the need to regulate eligibility requirements, conditions, and guarantees relating to facial recognition, in compliance with the principle of proportionality”, However, the action of the Data Protection Agency shows a clear oversight of invasive policing practices which use facial recognition.

The ban though only impacts private sector use. The European Union, is currently in the process of passing the AI Act which would enforce legal frameworks for artificial intelligence (AI) across all public and private uses. In particular, the EU has an aversion to practices like mass surveilling crowds and conducting real-time stop searches, which is known to have a link to oppressive policing and bias towards marginalised groups.

Under Italian law, the processing of personal data by public bodies using recognition devices is allowed for reasons of public interest.  Two municipality were caught using the technology which prompted the ban, in the southern Italian city of Lecce. In 2021, a temporary ban was approved stopping private entities from using systems in public places.

Italy supports the Reclaim Your Face coalition, which has called for a European-wide ban on this type of technology.

British Airways trials face biometrics, physical passports are secondary ID

British Airways trials face biometrics, physical passports are secondary ID

The UK’s number #1 trusted airline, British Airways has begun a pilot trial of facial biometric systems, making physical passports a secondary ID requirement.

Physical documents are expected to continue being used in years to come as proof of identity, while coinciding with advancing digital ID technologies. So, naturally, passengers will still have to carry around their passport and be prepared to show it on request when they reach their destination airport.

More people are experiencing a faster, more efficient security process through the airport which utilises biometrics, the most common modality being face recognition.

The adoption of biometrics provides an alternative way to confirm identity, which favours more the customer experience.

The trial will affect international flights and eliminate the need to use a passport when being processed through security controls. Customers who volunteered to sign up to the pilot trial, based at London Heathrow’s Terminal 5, will be required to submit their biometric and biographic data in advance of travel.

Participants have been invited to scan their face, passport or boarding pass on a smart phone or tablet, which will stored in a pre-held gallery. The airport is fitted with Smart Bio-Pod cameras which can automatically scan and match a live image of the passenger with the pre-held data. 

Selected customers have been invited by BA to take part in the pilot trial, travelling from London Heathrow Terminal 5. They will receive an email three days ahead of their flight.

David Breeze, Operations Transformation Manager at British Airways, explained: “Not only is this the first time that our customers have been able to register their biometric information at home, but it’s the first time they can use it for British Airways’ international flights. This is a secure and efficient tool that makes for a smarter and smoother airport experience, which will reduce the time it takes us to board aircraft”.

“The beauty of this technology is that it also frees our people up to look after more complex customer enquiries and deliver the best possible customer service”. The trial is ongoing for 6 months, after which biometric systems could be rolled out for international flights.

Flights to Malaga, Spain are currently affected by the trial. According to the website, BA customers partaking in the trial can register their data at various touchpoints at Check-In Zone B.

The trial follows the introduction of automated biometrics on British Airways’ domestic flights in 2017.

Removing police power to use LFR surveillance

Removing police power to use LFR surveillance

One failing of biometric technology can be attributed to algorithm bias, which can commonly occur due to the immaturity of technologies. This can cause varying match results across different demographic groups.

Whilst the infancy of biometric technologies is one explanation for false match rates, it nonetheless raises some ethical concerns around racial unfairness.

The Racial Justice Network (RJN) is an anti-racism charity that seeks to eliminate all forms of racism in treatment towards black people, and even in technologies that could be interpreted as favouring certain demographics. While biometrics is designed to streamline the user experience, bias in biometric technology has the potential to be a vehicle for discrimination and places both physical and metaphorical barriers in the way of black people.

A specific report on bias in biometric technology tackles the common use of facial recognition in routine policing practices, which raises concerns over privacy and the use of invasive technologies.. It also feeds into an uncomfortable truth about the relationship between the black community and the police, which has long been accused of unfairly treating black people in relation to crimes.

The freedom of the police to use biometric technology at will in investigations exacerbates the “worrying racial disparities we already see in policing”. The reports calls to abolish unacceptable norms in policing to stop and search black people, who may be forced to provide a photograph which is used to find matches on the policing database.

The Facial Recognition (OIFR) App should be used in circumstances when someone cannot confirm their identity because they are deceased or have mental health, age or medical barriers. It is also permitted if the subject refuses requests to provide or provides false information about their identity.

In a study to assess racial and sexist bias in FRT algorithms, the report cities the National Institute of Standards and Technology “analysed 189 facial recognition algorithms submitted by 99 developers” which found that the majority were substantially less likely to correctly identify a Black woman than a member of any other demographic.

The findings of Big Brother Watch (2022) revealed that over 3,000 people were falsely identified by police biometrics, which was 87% inaccurate (2016-2022).

The Racial Justice Network uncovered that South Wales Police was the only police force in England and Wales to pilot use of the facial recognition mobile app (Operation Initiated Facial Recognition) in policing procedures, and worryingly, black people are 4 times more likely to be stopped and scanned than a white person.

(Loyola-Hernández, L., Coleman, C., Wangari-Jones, P. and Carey, J. (2022) #HandsOffOurBiodata: Mobilising against police use of biometric fingerprint and facial recognition technology, the Racial Justice Network and Yorkshire Resists, UK.)

IDEMIA outperforms competition in latest NIST latent fingerprint benchmark test for forensic applications

IDEMIA outperforms competition in latest NIST latent fingerprint benchmark test for forensic applications

Global Identity technologies leader IDEMIA once again is the proven leader offering the most accurate algorithms on both fingerprint and palm datasets in the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)’s latest Evaluation of Latent Fingerprint Technologies.

Jean-Christophe Fondeur, IDEMIA Chief Technical Officer said: “The impressive level of performance demonstrated in this benchmark is a game changer for forensic investigation. This technology makes it easier for investigators and law enforcement to solve more crimes much faster. This is in line with our long-standing and ongoing 40-plus-year pledge to provide law enforcement agencies with the very best systems on the market. All around the world, they can draw on the most accurate algorithms to carry out latent feature searches, work more efficiently in their identification tasks and make the world safer”.

NIST ELFT is the new reference benchmark for latent fingerprint accuracy, greatly enhancing the previous ELFT-EFS benchmark. The ELFT benchmark includes both fingerprint and palm print accuracy, testing and assessing accuracy with image only or with additional features positioned by experienced human fingerprint examiners, such as minutiae.

While crime scene latent fingerprint features are the most challenging as they are often incomplete or poor quality, IDEMIA achieves the most accurate matching algorithms for both fingerprint and palm datasets with accuracy 7% to 60% higher than rival algorithms. This cements IDEMIA as the leader in fingerprint technology, while amplifying its fingerprint recognition expertise, even for the hardest fingerprints, and its world-class fingerprint technology research.

IDEMIA is truly committed to the highest level of technology to provide fast, accurate, and fair solutions. These ELFT results come on the heels of other high-ranking NIST benchmarks already achieved this year, further demonstrating IDEMIA’s technology leadership. The following awards speak to IDEMIA’s innovation and best-in-class solutions in security and public safety.

  • FACE: #1 in Fairness the latest NIST Face Recognition Vendor Test (FRVT).
  • FACE: #3 in the latest NIST FRVT 1:N global leaderboard.
  • FACE acquisition: #1 in the US Department of Homeland Security annual’s biometric technologies rally.
  • FINGERPRINT: #1 in mFIT Challenge in June 2022. 
  • IRIS: #2 in the latest IREX 10 benchmark, for Single-eye Accuracy. 
  • FINGERPRINT: #1 on all data sets in the latest PFT III benchmark (Proprietary Fingerprint Template) for our AFIS-class algorithms. 

IDEMIA is proud to be the leader across all biometric technologies and to integrate these top technologies into its products and solutions.



TECH5’s fingerprint and iris matching algorithms become fastest in the world, according to the latest NIST evaluation reports

TECH5’s fingerprint and iris matching algorithms become fastest in the world, according to the latest NIST evaluation reports

Fingerprint and iris matching algorithms of TECH5, an innovator in the field of biometrics and digital identity management, are the fastest in the world, according to the NIST PFT III and NIST IREX 10 evaluations. NIST Proprietary Fingerprint Template (PFT) III is a fingerprint technology evaluation exploring the performance and accuracy of proprietary fingerprint templates used in Civil ID and border control ABIS (Automated Biometric Identification Systems). The new fingerprint matching algorithm, submitted by TECH5 to NIST PFT III for the first time, and rated as the fastest matching as well as one of the most accurate in the world, is based on a combination of AI (Artificial Intelligence)/Machine Learning and proven traditional approaches.

This combination allows for higher matching speed and improved accuracy of the technology, which results in a reduced server hardware footprint and a lower total cost of ownership (TCO) for the entity deploying the TECH5 solution. The TECH5 fingerprint algorithm is 400% faster than the next-fastest algorithm in the report, has a 66% lower error rate, and requires only 50% of the memory resources due to the smaller template size. The NIST IREX 10: Identification Track assesses iris recognition performance for identification (one-to-many) applications. Most flagship deployments of iris recognition operate in identification mode, providing services ranging from border security, expedited processing, and distribution of resources. The iris matching algorithm of TECH5, again the first submission of a combination of AI and traditional approaches, showed the highest matching speed among all vendors participating in the evaluation. The company plans to submit an enhanced algorithm within 2022 which will have even higher accuracy and speeds.

“We are constantly investing in AI-based approaches in research for all three key biometric modalities under TECH5’s umbrella – face, fingerprint, and iris – and recent results are clearly showing the benefits. The results from the first submission of our fingerprint matching algorithm to NIST PFT III evaluation is proving our claim of AI/NN playing a pivotal role in all biometric modalities to make them robust. We have ambitious plans to solidify our leading positions for all three technologies. We are convinced that this is just the beginning, and we will continue improving the algorithms powering our matching platforms with top speed and accuracy,” says Rahul Parthe, Co-founder, Chairman, and CTO of TECH5.

The biometric technologies mentioned are used in TECH5’s ABIS platform for National ID-scale projects, ensuring inclusion across the globe, and are already available for certified partners of the company as part of the flagship identification and verification offerings. These results also align with Rahul Parthe’s claims on ID4Africa when asked by Dr. Joseph Atick about contactless capture becoming effective in large-scale programs. These AI-based approaches for fingerprint matching will meet and exceed the needs.

Colorado: State-issued ID card now available in the Apple Wallet

Colorado: State-issued ID card now available in the Apple Wallet

The provision of digital ID cards and driving licenses is seeming a likely prospect in Colorado. The Colorado Division of Motor Vehicles announced an integration of existing ID cards with the Apple wallet.

The state’s adoption of digital identity will enable alternative ways to confirm your identity both with physical card options and the wallet, which can store payments cards, driving licenses, and other identity documents on a mobile device.

With a simple tap, citizens can use Colorado ID on their iPhone or Apple Watch at selected Transportation Security Administration (TSA) PreCheck® security checkpoints, which are being implemented in key ports of entry including Denver International Airport (DEN).

Mark Ferrandino, Executive Director at Colorado Department of Revenue explained the benefits and expressed commitment to “saving people time, enhancing convenience and security, and expanding accessibility for all Coloradans”. While promoting digital innovations in travel, he also concurred with many in the identity industry that physical ID documents would continue to coincide with digital forms of ID.

Coloradans must already have an ID card or driving licence to upload to the Apple wallet, in a sign that the wallet is not yet advanced and ready to replace all physical ID.

Electra Bustle, Senior Director of DMV added: “Colorado is always looking for services that provide our residents security, privacy and ease of use. As we partner with the Transportation Security Administration to offer Colorado ID in Wallet to traveling Coloradans, we are thrilled to offer this new service to make their travel experience more seamless and convenient”.

Countries that have adopted the ID wallet across the U.S. range from Arizona, Connecticut, Georgia, Iowa to Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma, and Utah. Information is securely encrypted on the digital wallet and stored in the Secure Element, the same technology used in Apple Pay.