Events

The State of Mobile Identity Credentials (IBIA, Oct 20, 2020)
Join Us on October 20 for a Webinar on "The State of Mobile Identity Credentials. This webinar will address the incorporation of biometrics and significant privacy-protecting security processes that allow mobile credentials to be authenticated and trusted to the same extent as the physical document. Register now for this first webinar that explores The Path to Digital Identity: Principles for Mobile Identity Credentials with key leaders in the industry.


Speed Read

Paperless Schools Of The Future: Decoding The Potential Of Digital Adoption For Schools (Express Computer, Oct 15, 2020)
Even as Ed-tech becomes the buzzword in these times of virtual classrooms and AI powered assisted learning tools, the future of education is as much dependent on digitisation of schools and educational institutes as it is on individual adoption of online learning, across age groups. The pandemic has further highlighted the need for an efficient, digitally enabled and seamless infrastructure for school education. In the decade to come, while there will be several innovations in assisted learning tools and teaching mechanisms, listed here are 10 key trends that would be mainstream in a ‘paperless’ school system:
 

Examining Racism & Prejudice In Tech In 'Coded Bias' Doc Film Trailer (First Showing, Oct 15, 2020)
In a pivotal moment for racial equality, and a decisive moment for how big tech will yield power, Coded Bias is a trailblazing film for public understanding and engagement with the algorithms that impact us all. Another important doc film that might just change the world if enough people see it. Arriving in theaters next month.
 

Six Ways Machine Learning Threatens Social Justice (Big Think, Oct 15, 2020)
When you harness the power and potential of machine learning, there are also some drastic downsides that you've got to manage. Deploying machine learning, you face the risk that it be discriminatory, biased, inequitable, exploitative, or opaque. In this article, I cover six ways that machine learning threatens social justice and reach an incisive conclusion: The remedy is to take on machine learning standardization as a form of social activism.
 

iPhone 12 Failed To Address How Face ID Is Useless In The Age Of Coronavirus (CNET, Oct 15, 2020)
It's been an exasperating year as almost every aspect of our lives has needed to be rethought due to the coronavirus pandemic. And one minor niggle that nobody could possibly have foreseen going into 2020 is that wearing masks everywhere has made it impossible to unlock your phone -- including Apple's new iPhone 12 -- with your face. That doesn't mean you shouldn't bother wearing a mask. You should definitely be wearing a mask. But it doesn't change the fact that going back to inputting a PIN to unlock your phone while wearing a mask feels like a huge regression. The other option is to pull your mask down every time you need to use your phone, but that's neither hygienic nor practical.
 

Facial Recognition In Video Games Comes With Security Risks, Chinese Industry Group Warns (South China Morning Post , Oct 15, 2020)
Facial recognition is ubiquitous in China these days, and it is used for everything from making payments to logging into video games. While consumers have become increasingly concerned about the technology’s privacy implications, it is now facing criticism from a state-sponsored industry group.
 

UM Used Surveillance To Track Student Protesters (Miami New Times, Oct 15, 2020)
Since the University of Miami resumed in-person classes in August, the decision to reopen has come under fire. While students had the choice to stay home, faculty and staff were required to return to campus amid the pandemic. That dichotomy led to demonstrations — on September 4, faculty, students, and subcontracted workers staged a "die-in" to protest what they viewed as a lack of concern for their safety. Demonstrators played dead while holding up signs, including one that said that UM president Julio Frenk was at fault.
 

Countries Are Hungry For Cyber Power (Medium, Oct 15, 2020)
It seems like the world might have just found its new battlefield: the internet. And no, we’re not referring to internet trolling. For quite some time now, technology and cyber power have been the interest of many countries; but now, owing to COVID-19 and the consequential prohibition of physical meetings, digital seems to be the way to go, thereby garnering more attention and prominently, more importance.
 

Face Masks And Facial Recognition Will Both Be Common In The Future. How Will They Co-exist? (Stuff, Oct 15, 2020)
It’s surprising how quickly public opinion can change. Winding the clocks back 12 months, many of us would have looked at a masked individual in public with suspicion. Now, some countries have enshrined face mask use in law. They’ve also been made compulsory in Victoria and are recommended in several other states. One consequence of this is that facial recognition systems in place for security and crime prevention may no longer be able to fulfil their purpose. In Australia, most agencies are silent about the use of facial recognition.
 

Private Firms Provide Software And Information To Police, Documents Show (The Guardian, Oct 15, 2020)
Scores of private firms, consultants and non-governmental organizations have provided software, equipment, training and information to law enforcement agencies in a burgeoning profit-making industry, according to documents from the so-called Blueleaks information dump.
 

Facial Recognition Deal Too Weak To Protect Māori Data Sovereignty - Specialists (RNZ, Oct 15, 2020)
The Department of Internal Affairs has signed a master deal for facial recognition systems with the local subsidiary of US giant tech company DXC. Within that, the department and DXC have done their own deal to launch a passports system with much greater biometrics processing power using Neoface software from Japanese firm NEC. Data sovereignty group Te Mana Raraunga is urging the department to do a full privacy impact assessment even though it earlier decided against doing one.
 

Big Education Is Watching You (Duke Chronical, Oct 15, 2020)
The camera pans across a sterile gymnasium, where dozens of tables are arranged six-feet apart. Students, anxiously biting nails and tapping pencils, take their seats. Exams are passed out. Moments later, camera bots descend from the ceiling. Lenses hyper-focus on the test takers, capturing every blink, twitch, and cough. A deep voice reads out: “Big Education is watching you.” This scene, in all of its Orwellian glory, could be the opening sequence of a (bad) dystopian film. Intense, heart-thumping music would play as students raced to select A, B, C, or D. If students waved to each other, the anthropomorphic camera bots would assemble into an army and swallow them. Spooky!
 

The NYPD Has A Surveillance Problem (City & State NY, Oct 15, 2020)
The New York City Police Department has eyes everywhere. Before the passage of the Public Oversight of Surveillance Technology Act by the New York City Council in June, the public had few ways to learn how the NYPD was using surveillance technologies like facial recognition, running checks against controversial databases or even tracking public opinion about the department itself. While the passage of the POST Act will require the NYPD to disclose more information to the City Council about how it uses some of these technologies, the first report from the NYPD isn’t due until early next year. But Council Member Vanessa Gibson, who sponsored the law, said on-time reporting compliance was often a problem for city agencies, and she foresaw that the report could be delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
 

The Pandemic's Digital Shadow: Increased Surveillance (The Hill, Oct 15, 2020)
Governments’ responses to today’s pandemic are laying a foundation for tomorrow’s surveillance state. New smartphone apps are collecting biometric and geolocation data to automate contact tracing, enforce quarantines, and determine individuals’ health status. Government agencies are harvesting more user data from service providers without oversight or safeguards against abuse. Police and corporations are accelerating the rollout of technologies to monitor people in public, including facial recognition, thermal scanning, and predictive tools.
 

CBP Launches Website To Promote Transparency Around Biometric Travel Program (Next Gov, Oct 15, 2020)
U.S. Customs and Border Protection rolled out a new website last month dedicated to its Biometric Entry-Exit program used to verify identities at ports. In a recent interview, a CBP official told Nextgov the new site aims to alleviate privacy concerns by providing a clear explanation of how CBP uses biometric facial comparison technology. The new website launched September 1, one day before the Government Accountability Office publicly released an audit outlining failures by CBP to provide adequate notice informing travelers about the biometric program via signage at ports, website information and CBP call center assistance.


Members News & Views

CLEAR Announces Major "Health Pass" Partnerships (CLEAR, Oct 15, 2020)
As Americans increasingly seek to return to their normal routines, businesses are turning to CLEAR’s Health Pass, a touchless product that connects identity to COVID-related insights, to help them reopen safely and give everyone greater peace of mind. This past week we announced four major partnerships:

 

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