DHS has face ID standard

InterNational Committee for Information Technology Standards

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Homeland Security Department officials have adopted the first biometric facial recognition standard that will be used for items such as passports and other travel documents.

The guidelines, meant to be consistent with international biometric standards, also will be used to "specify definitions of photographic properties and digital image attributes, and as a standards format for relevant applications, including human examination and computer automated face recognition," according to an Oct. 28 DHS press release.

"This standard will help improve our long-term security by facilitating the interchange of digitally stored photographs, regardless of what equipment is used to take or to display the images," Charles McQueary, undersecretary for DHS' Science and Technology Directorate, said in a statement.

Not only will the standard provide industry with common technical criteria to design equipment such as cameras and software, it also will facilitate the exchange of photographs among systems, help officials identify and verify people, and support facial comparisons in watch lists, for example.

Face mapping has been adopted as the international biometric standard for passports in 27 countries and the United States. It also will be used in various DHS programs.

This standard was developed by the InterNational Committee for Information Technology Standards, a standards development organization accredited by the American National Standards Institute.

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