Facial Recocgnition AI at War

March 21, 2022 - 6 minutes read

Once common primarily in science fiction entertainment, facial recognition is now ubiquitous with the mobile devices we carry with us. It is the biometric security technology of choice for many to lock (and unlock) and secure our information and devices. Facial recognition artificial intelligence (AI), similar to mobile device biometric security, takes recognizing faces and applies AI algorithms to verify and identify an individual.

As a leading artificial intelligence app development firm, we get questions regarding AI services often. So, with so much interesting conversation in the space, we wanted to dig in and give our take. Let’s dive in.

What is Facial Recognition AI

Facial Recognition AI technology companies in tech hubs such as Silicon Valley and Seattle and the world offer variations of software and applications. Industries such as healthcare, academics, and law enforcement use facial recognition AI technology. However, the Russian war in Ukraine opened additional ways to use facial recognition AI technology.

This technology is an advanced method of identifying people as part of biometric security technology. The basic premise applies AI technology as a form of biometric authentication algorithm. The process uses facial features from an image or video database to identify and verify a person.

 There are many benefits to facial recognition AI technology. Facial recognition AI is highly accurate, with analysis reports indicating over 99% accurate results using public standard data sets. It is difficult to fool or elude facial recognition AI even with deep fake technology. With facial recognition AI, the potential to reduce personal biases could lead to less profiling.

 Despite the many benefits of using facial recognition AI, some privacy and legality concerns are associated with the technology.

How does Facial Recognition Work?

Facial recognition AI works by using algorithms and machine learning to detect human faces. The application takes a photo or multiple photos of a face that the AI isolates from background images. The algorithm analyzes each facial feature, including the photos’ iris, eyebrows, and nostrils. Once captured and cataloged, the facial recognition AI compares the results against large data sets of facial images to confirm that the subject is human and identify the person.

 As with any other AI, facial recognition AI requires vast data sets to train and learn. The more the AI works with images, the better it can identify people in complex or poor-quality images. It is the use of these data sets that cause concerns. A common practice by facial recognition companies is to pull images from the open web. Often, these companies do not gain consent to use and store the images of millions of people.

Facial Recognition AI Uses

There are many uses for facial recognition AI technology across several industries. Some examples include:

  • Healthcare – Facial recognition technology helps increase the accuracy and speed of patient identification, including expedited check-in and check-out procedures.
  • Air Travel: Facial and eye scans help identify and verify air travelers, helping to speed up security check procedures.
  • Testing: Facial recognition AI supports virtual academic proctoring or testing for certification by verifying the student.

 Law enforcement is another area that uses facial recognition AI technology to identify suspects, solve cases, and increase surveillance. A significant contributor of facial recognition AI technology to law enforcement agencies came from a company called Clearview AI.

 Clearview made waves by collecting billions of images from sites like Facebook and YouTube. Their application takes a photo of a person and returns additional images of that person, including where the images originated. Clearview’s AI and application push the boundaries of ethical practices, legality, consent, and privacy.

Clearview and Ukraine

With the Russian war in Ukraine entering its third week as of this article, Ukraine recently received Clearview’s facial recognition AI application technology. It should be no surprise that facial recognition AI technology sees use in a warzone.
FinTech companies find themselves in the middle of financial and economic sanctions against Russia. Now, Clearview AI’s facial recognition technology supports Ukraine’s defense and identity efforts.

 The main uses for Ukraine with Clearview AI’S technology are identifying the dead, reuniting refugees, and potentially exposing Russian operatives infiltrating the country. Another intended use may help combat misinformation, and propaganda spread on social media. Much of these uses are possible due to Clearview AI’s database, including millions of images from the Russian social media service called VKontakte.

 Although there are potential positive outcomes by using Clearview AI for Ukraine, war’s terror and chaos may have negative consequences. The fog of war, unintended uses (deliberate or not), or over-reliance could result in misidentification.

 Facial recognition AI will continue to play a prominent role in technology. Clearview AI is but one company in a growing market. If your company is interested in developing a mobile application that uses facial recognition AI, Dogtown Media can be your development partner.

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