The Truth About Face Recognition Technology: Separating Reality from Myth
May 2023 by Matrix Comsec
Face recognition technology has revolutionized the domains of access control and time-attendance, bringing about improvements in security and surveillance. However, like any emerging technology, it has also been met with skepticism and controversy, with myths being circulated that can cause unnecessary worry and fear among the general public. In this article, we aim to debunk some of the most common myths surrounding face recognition technology.
Myth #1: Facial Recognition Identifies Everyone
It is a common misconception that face recognition technology can identify anyone, regardless of whether or not they have been registered in the system. The truth is that the system can only recognize individuals whose faces have been enrolled in the database. It is not possible for the system to randomly recognize someone without their face having been previously recorded.
Additionally, concerns over the security of face recognition data are unfounded. The data is stored in the form of a string of data points extracted from the face, which cannot be easily hacked, intercepted, or shared. Even if the data were to be compromised, it would be difficult to reverse engineer the data points to recreate an image of the person’s face.
Myth #2: Face Recognition Invades Privacy
Another myth that circulates about face recognition technology is that once an individual’s face has been registered in one database, their information is automatically linked to all other face recognition databases. This is simply not true. Most facial recognition solutions use different technical approaches, making it impossible for them to be interconnected. Moreover, organizations that collect facial recognition data are bound by laws and regulations that protect individual privacy.
Myth #3: Face Recognition Doesn’t Identify a Person as They Age
It is true that as individuals age, their facial features change, making it more difficult for face recognition technology to identify them accurately. However, this is not a significant issue. The system can be programmed to regularly update its database with changes to an individual’s facial features, thereby ensuring that the recognition remains accurate over time.
Myth #4: Face Recognition Doesn’t Identify in the Case of Face Masks
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted another myth about face recognition technology – that it cannot recognize individuals who are wearing face masks. However, this is not entirely true. While face masks can obscure certain facial features, most facial recognition algorithms are designed to recognize prominent facial features, such as the eyes and eyebrows. As such, the technology is still able to identify individuals even when they are wearing masks.
Myth #5: Face Recognition Technology is Expensive
Finally, there is a myth that face recognition technology is prohibitively expensive, making it accessible only to large organizations and government agencies. While it is true that the most advanced face recognition systems used in high-security settings can be expensive, many face recognition solutions are relatively affordable and offer a high level of security. In fact, face recognition is often more cost-effective than other biometric credentials, such as retina or palm vein scans.
As with any new technology, there are bound to be misconceptions and myths surrounding face recognition. It is important to dispel these myths and understand the actual capabilities and limitations of the technology. While concerns over privacy are certainly valid, they should not be based on unfounded fears and misinformation. Instead, we should strive to stay informed and utilize face recognition technology for its potential to improve security and safety.