[This article was written by Dawn Castell.]
Biometric authentication is here to stay as a tool that is being employed in the workplace, replacing a less efficient use of passwords and security guards. Considering the increase in international sales, sophisticated security measures become more critical than ever before to pave the way for both domestic and global trade. CNN published Spiceworks prediction claiming that by 2020, 90 percent of businesses will be utilizing facial recognition technology(FRT) and other biometric tools.
How Facial Recognition Works
Facial recognition technology can be summed up in a few simple steps. First, the system must collect physical and behavioral data samples during a specified time period and consistent with established, pre-approved conditions. Templates use this data to produce customized templates.
Next, the existing templates are examined and evaluated for a match with the data collected. This process takes only seconds to complete.
Benefits of Facial Recognition in the Workplace
– Enhances Security and Lowers Costs
Upwork reports that facial recognition technology bolsters security while simultaneously lowering security operational costs. This technology allows managers to track employees and visitors with ease. Trespassers are immediately recognized as soon as they step onsite without any need for security guards who have to rely on their own eyes and ears to verify antiquated badges.
– Easy to Implement
One of the most exciting aspects of facial recognition technology is the ease with which it can be implemented. While changes of this magnitude are typically expensive and time consuming, the compatibility of this technology with established systems have made facial recognition technology very attractive. With so many benefits to gain coupled with the ease of implementation, it is not surprising that decision makers are buying-in with little hesitation.
– Eliminates Employee Time Fraud
Time fraud is a problem for all companies. By using this technology, there is no way a friend can clock-in for a tardy employee who is not present. Face-scanning technology makes this type of deceit impossible. As one of the most common ways employees defraud their employer, essentially stealing unearned wages from them, FRT offers significant benefits to protect a company’s bottomline.
Challenges of Facial Recognition Technology
It is impossible to fully discuss a new technology without recognizing the challenges inherent in the acceptance and implementation of it. Ethical concerns about privacy and possible biases unintentionally built into the technology have fueled a lot of pushback to the acceptance of FRT. Laws have been passed in some states to address these concerns. For example, Texas and Illinois passed laws requiring consent from involved parties before this type of personal data can be collected. The European Union has also joined the ranks of concerned organizations that require consent prior to collecting biometric data.
Another major obstacle to the worldwide acceptance of facial recognition technology relates to a bias issue that negatively impacts the accuracy of the identification. Fortune reports that FRT is much more accurate processing white males than females or people with darker skin. This obviously represents a serious problem that must be corrected before the technology can be utilized as a standalone security tool.
Companies and privacy advocates are also expressing concerns about “bad actors” hijacking consumer’s face scans via iPhone X. One reassuring argument that should satisfy the parties worried about privacy is that data shared with iOS developers is not capable of unlocking phones.
While the challenges to full acceptance of FRT are serious and sure to incite some strong opposition from privacy advocates, the benefits are promising. In a world intent on accurate identification methods for business purposes, passwords and security questions are not adequate methods to guarantee a person’s identity. CNN Tech predicts that biometrics is here to stay and will continue to grow.