Difficult, scary, unreliable: the main myths about the introduction of biometrics
Today facial biometrics is successfully used to solve a variety of problems.
It can be used as a management accounting tool, be a source of reliable information about the company's internal processes, and help to work with personnel. And, of course, the main functions of biometric technologies remain safety and convenience. Additional protection for the enterprise and a new level of comfort for users — a win-win combination. Nevertheless, biometrics are still often treated with a certain degree of caution. But, in fact, fears turn out to be ordinary prejudices. We present TOP-7 popular myths about facial biometrics according to RecFaces. And we sort out why it is high time for the business community to abandon them.
1. «Biometrics is a very long, difficult and incredibly expensive technology to implement»
Oddly enough, but face biometrics are most often criticized by those who previously, on the contrary, advocated its implementation. In recent times, the implementation of a project with facial recognition technology has indeed been a rather time-consuming process. Installation of equipment, configuration and additional tuning of the system took from several weeks to several months. To switch to biometric identification, enterprises had to remake the technical infrastructure, buy additional equipment or completely change one. Additional spending increased an already large project budget.
The turning point was the entry into the market of ready-made box biometric products, the installation of which can be carried out as soon as possible. So, it takes 20 minutes to install ready-made biometric solutions Id-Guard or Id-Gate by RecFaces. Complex changes of infrastructure when introducing biometric identification is already yesterday's news. Modern products in the facial biometrics field are integrated with the products of popular manufacturers of video surveillance systems and ACS. The requirements for the technical base depend on the tasks of a particular case. But by and large, for the implementation of the project, there is enough conventional API or web-camera that meets standard characteristics. It is not necessary to purchase expensive special equipment.
2. «Why would I change anything»
«The best is the enemy of the good,» you can hear in discussions around biometrics. Usually, «good» means well-established safety principles and work scheme that has stood the test of time. Having a security service, surveillance cameras and ACS terminals at their disposal, companies feel quite secure and see no reason to change something. But, digging a little bit deeper, it is easy to detect a lot of gaps in this security system. Suddenly it turns out that they are not robots who are sitting behind video surveillance monitors, but people whose eyes get tired after several hours of work. Also, even the most modern ACS is easy to deceive by transferring an RFID card to an outsider. And the longer the password, the easier it is to compromise, because employees are physically unable to remember a complex combination of characters and usually have a piece of paper with a password near the computer.
These problems are easily solved using facial biometrics, where the person's face becomes the «access card» or «password» to the computer. And security officers will learn about the incidents in real time through notifications. Abandoning the «best» for the sake of the «good,» companies deprive themselves of the opportunity to bridge security gaps using biometrics.
3. «Biometrics was invented to destroy the security service»
The security service often opposes the introduction of facial biometrics at the enterprise. Moreover, usually all their arguments are easily explained by fear of massive reductions in the security staff. This is a fairly common misconception that has nothing in common with the real goals of biometrics.
Facial recognition technology is designed to increase the efficiency of the security service. At the same time, biometrics facilitates life of the guards. Modern biometric products are equipped with certified integration modules with leading video surveillance systems. This allows the operator to work with new functions in a one interface window. Operational notifications presented in biometric products also provide a huge advantage. According to the script, the system automatically notifies security personnel of security incidents in real time. And a quick and convenient search in the biometric archive considerably accelerates the incident investigation process.
Biometrics is not an opponent of the security service, but its associate. The main role is still played by a person. And biometric technologies only help him strengthen control and make timely decisions.
4. «Small businesses do not need biometrics»
Certainly, a large plant with a large number of staff or a multistory business center with a hundred tenants will need the introduction of biometrics more. However, regardless of the size of the enterprise, business tasks remain unchanged. Increase security, automate internal processes, create a comfortable working environment — all these advantages of biometric identification are relevant for businesses of any scale.
5. «The benefits of biometrics cannot be estimated»
When planning any innovation, I always want to estimate in advance the benefits of its implementation. Hypothetically, the damage from the incident, which could not be prevented due to the lack of smart video surveillance, can reach up to billions of rubles. For example, if someone steals the design documentation for a new development from the office of the design bureau head. But in practice, the benefits of biometrics are more often measured by the positive changes that have occurred in the company. For example, by the absence of queues at the entrance during rush hour or by getting rid of thieves, included in the stop list of the store. It is possible to evaluate the success of the biometrics implementation in figures. But it is more rational to do it after a certain period. For example, if a bank introduces cashless payment «by face», in a few years it can compare its client base with the client base of competitors who do not use this technology.
6. «Biometrics are unreliable and easy to deceive»
Insecurity is one of the main delusions about biometric algorithms. Modern technologies are developing incredibly fast. For example, terminals with facial recognition function are already unreal to deceive using either makeup or a medical mask. In different countries, anti-fraud technologies to counteract the so-called «deepfakes» are also actively developing. Their developers are finding it increasingly difficult to circumvent face recognition algorithms every year. And in the future, hacking biometric systems will become so difficult that it will be pointless to create «deepfakes» in most cases. More information about deepfakes was in the article “Running race: biometric technologies vs deepfake”
7. «Employees will start to protest against biometrics»
Sometimes biometrics is prejudiced not so much by the company's management as by its personnel. Often this negative is based on a mix of lack of awareness and fear of the abstract Big Brother. Psychologically, it is difficult for people to «share face». Even though all user data and biometric templates are stored in encrypted form in stand-alone repositories, using which is impossible to restore a photo of a real person.
However, in practice the stage of rejection of biometrics is short-lived. Employees are able to get to the core quickly of all the facial identification benefits. The growing popularity of biometrics in our daily life also has a positive impact. People daily use facial biometrics in smartphones. Since October 2021 the «face payment» function has been operating in the Moscow metro. The technology is introduced into the work of banks and supermarkets. And, if the biometric revolution has not yet happened in Russia, then the evolution of people's attitude to biometrics is happening right now. Distrust and fear turn into pleasure from interacting with technology designed to make people's lives more comfortable and safer.