Look Me in the Eye – The Rise of Facial Recognition

By Sandra Quinn

Over the past week, the rise of facial recognition and how it’s being used has been dominating headlines with members of the public uncomfortable with the idea that software that they could be unaware of is being used to identify them.

In America, Orlando Police are piloting facial recognition software from Amazon in a bid to increase public safety and operational efficiency.

Amazon Rekognition aims to provide real-time facial recognition and Orlando Police Chief John Mina said; “My hope is that one day it will work and one day it will prevent some tragedies across the nation.”

Civil rights groups have expressed concerns that if rolled out further, facial recognition could be used to identify people attending protests, festivals or sporting events and that it could also be incorporated into street cameras.

On the other hand, there have been examples of how it could be used in kidnapping cases, stalking, and to prevent incidents of terrorism.

Security experts have also said that using it extensively in airports could make the airports more efficient, as people will be able to pass through quicker and it will also help to identify possible threats.

The future of this software could see consumers not needing to produce tickets at events, but instead just having their face recognised, or paying for items through a connected payment system.