30 October 2009
Dear Ms Homer
The FBI imply that UKBA are wasting money on face recognition technology
The UK Border
Agency (UKBA) have installed smart gates at 10
21 October 2009 at the Biometrics 2009
Face recognition would be the killer application of biometrics, Mr Loudermilk told the hundreds of conference delegates. The FBI would love to be able to use face recognition in their fight against crime. But they canít. The algorithms just donít exist to deliver the highly reliable verification required. They have been evaluating face recognition technology since 1963. They didnít invest then. And theyíre still not investing now.
Many critics of UKBAís dependence on face recognition technology can be ignored. When it comes from the FBI, that is a different order of (implicit) criticism. It canít be ignored. It demands a response, including a public examination of the statistics on the basis of which UKBA made its smart gates decision.
Given that, according to the FBI, the algorithms just donít exist to deliver the highly reliable verification required, two questions for you:
∑ Are UKBA wasting their time and wasting taxpayersí money on face recognition technology?
∑ Will border security suffer as a result of UKBA relying on face recognition technology?
cc††††††† Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP, Chairman, Home Affairs Committee
††††††††††† Phil Willis MP, Chairman, Science and Technology Committee
††††††††††† Sir David Normington KCB, Permanent Secretary, Home Office
††††††††††† Sir Michael Scholar KCB,
††††††††††† Brodie Clark, Head of the Border
††††††††††† John Vine CBE QPM,
††††††††††† James Hall, Chief Executive, Identity & Passport Service