This interview is with Robert Tappan, Association Executive, International Biometrics & Identity Association who recently refuted claims from some US senators that biometrics used by the Transport Security Association are invasive, anti privacy-preserving, bias and contributing to the idea of “surveillance” with new technologies.  The IBIA is an advocacy and educational organisation representing the biometrics and identity technologies industry.

The questions included:

  1. Why do you think the terms “surveillance” and “identity verification” have been conflated? What are the perceptions of facial biometrics? True or not?
  2. Is there evidence at all to suggest face verification technology is being used in the wrong way to invade privacy?
  3. Talking to some vendors, some say there are some inherent biases in the level of technology that are being mitigated. Do you disagree that bias in biometrics now exists?
  4. What are the differences between surveillance and verification that you suggested in your comments?
  5. How do these claims/ beliefs affect trust?
  6. Describe the level of progress in America with biometric deployments and are some unfounded beliefs that biometrics are ‘threatening our democracy’ derailing progress?