The science fiction of the future is getting closer. You walk by a store and the large digital screen advertising products presents goods to you that are tailored to your age using facial recognition technology. This is here today, both Adidas and Kraft have plans for this type of digital ads. Read more at Forbes (http://www.forbes.com/sites/kashmirhill/2011/09/01/kraft-to-use-facial-recognition-technology-to-give-you-macaroni-recipes/).

Now what happens if this technology is connected to Facebook, so that they don’t need to guess how old you are based on how you look, but can see for a fact. Also that you have children, dogs, cats, and whatever more there is is glean, based upon how Facebook will organise unstructured data into a structured format so it is easy to link and process.

Now facial recognition technologies are also to deny access to casinos in Las Vegas. Now imagine if every club and bar could effectively do away with the traditional bouncer and instead implement this technology.

Previously I have talked a lot about storecards, RFID and how this type of invasion on privacy could make you vulnerable to tailored ads… although maybe you like this, it really depends on your viewpoint. However now, it really may not matter if you have a storecard, RFID, whatever, your face will reveal all, your FB account will feed the digital ads, and I guess you won’t have any say in this at all!

Largest biometric database being created in India with over 1.2 billion identities. Scary and a serious concern outside of the personal privacy aspect is the security of this database. From a positive standpoint and driving argument is that is provides the means to overcome the significant levels of corruption in India. Particularly for those living outside of the city and at the mercy of corrupt officials. In fact this database if implemented well would free these very persons from certain tyranny. Another dilemma ….

Interesting that participation is voluntary. Same as Sweden’s approach.

Read more here. It is fascinating reading and worth a visit 🙂 .

An excellent article on the use of CCTV, biometrics, databases, etc., in schools in the UK.

Can you imagine that on the uncertainly of whether CCTV should be permissible in toilets, Sayner (managing director of Proxis, a security installation company) reasons that “it depends exactly on what it is looking at,” adding that “If you’ve got nothing to hide, why should you object to that?” I just love this “nothing to hide” argument. For myself I’m not too keen on being the star on some camera footage when I visit the ladies room!

According to a report on BBC-news. Another reason against the use of biometrics in passports. If exceptions need to be made for those that cannot authenticate the the security systems becomes flawed.

It’s not just the FBI that are keen to collect DNA of innocent persons. In Australia Mr McDevitt chief executive of CrimTrac, the agency which maintains the database, said the next step was taking samples from people charged but not convicted and from people charged for minor crimes as well as serious offences. Read more…

The federal government is quietly working on a controversial plan to collect biometric information from visitors to Canada, immigration department officials revealed yesterday.

“The idea will be that we will take biometrics from people who are coming temporarily to Canada and need a visitor’s visa — temporary workers, students and visitors,” Claudette Deschenes, assistant deputy minister in the immigration department told members of Parliament. “Those who don’t need a visitor’s visa to enter Canada will be taken at the port of entry.”

Following in the footsteps of the U.S. border controls…. fun. I wonder what they are really going to use it for…and more importantly I wonder what privacy laws exist in Canada that will protect this biometric data? Read more on Toronto Sun.

The Department of Motor Vehicles recently proposed a $63 million contract with a company that uses facial-recognition software, which can detect whether a person photographed for a new driver’s license already has a license. The software allows the DMV to match a photograph with the entire DMV database of driver’s license pictures. This risk identified by the privacy group is of ‘mission creep’, that is this technology being used to identify persons in other situations, such as in a crowd.

This move has been blocked. Hence the DMV’s request to fast-track a new technology that the agency is seeking to deter identity theft, . The DMV sought permission from Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger to sign the contract as early as this week, without the scrutiny of public hearings. This is a victory for privacy-rights groups as this proposal will now have to undergo a public hearing.