Speed Read

Air New Zealand Customers, the First to Experience Biometric Verification (Travel Wires, Nov 23, 2022)

This is all part of Air New Zealand’s plan to remove the hassle from travel and make your journey through the airport easier. There is no scanning of boarding passes or sighting passports. Customers are given the option to register with Customs and Border Protection in the United States (CBP) upon entry. This data can then be used to verify the identity of the passenger at the time they board the plane using the automated airport kiosks. CBP secures biometric information and it is not accessible to Air New Zealand, or any other airline that uses this service. Nikhil Ravishankar, Chief Digital Officer at Air New Zealand, says that this technology will speed up the boarding process and create a seamless experience for both customers and airport staff.


British Airways Trials Contactless Biometric Boarding at London’s Heathrow Airport (NFCW, Nov 23, 2022)

Passengers on British Airways (BA) flights from London Heathrow’s Terminal 5 to Malaga in Spain will be the first to trial a contactless biometric check-in and boarding system that will enable them to travel through the airport and board an international flight without needing to show their passport. Customers who sign up to take part in the trial “will be invited to scan their face, passport and boarding pass on their smartphone or tablet ahead of travel, with this information being kept safe and secure,” BA says. “When trial participants arrive at the airport, Smart Bio-Pod cameras verify their identity in under three seconds, allowing them to keep their passport safely in their pockets until they reach their destination.”


Class-Action Snapchat Settlement Approved in Illinois. Here's What's Next (NBCChicago, Nov 23, 2022)

A class-action settlement involving Snapchat in Illinois was approved just before the Thanksgiving holiday, paving the way for checks to be distributed, the law firm behind the lawsuit confirmed to NBC 5. The hearing was the final step before payments can begin for those who submitted claims, but should there be an appeal, that could delay the process further. Details surrounding how much the actual payments will be also remained unclear as the firm behind the settlement said claims were still being processed. According to the settlement website, the social network is accused of violating Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act by illegally collecting users' biometric information like unique facial features -- through the use of features like "Lenses" and "Filters" -- without their consent. It was filed in May in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.


Facial Recognition Can Help Conserve Seals, Scientists Say (National Post, Nov 23, 2022)
A research team at Colgate University has developed SealNet, a database of seal faces created by taking pictures of dozens of harbor seals in Maine’s Casco Bay. The team found the tool’s accuracy in identifying the marine mammals is close to 100%, which is no small accomplishment in an ecosystem home to thousands of seals. The researchers are working on expanding their database to make it available to other scientists, said Krista Ingram, a biology professor at Colgate and a team member. Broadening the database to include rare species such as the Mediterranean monk seal and Hawaiian monk seal could help inform conservation efforts to save those species, she said. Cataloguing seal faces and using machine learning to identify them can also help scientists get a better idea of where in the ocean seals are located, Ingram said.

OKC Police Identify Suspect Using Facial Recognition (OKC Police, Nov 23, 2022)

He identified himself as ‘Brandon’ and told an officer on site to take his statement that he was shot while running SW 77th Place, but did not know who shot at him or why. The officer asked the man to confirm his name and birthday; an incident report showed the officer then ran the information through JailTracker for “positive identification” and realized that the picture in the system did not match the man’s physical appearance. “When we checked to see who he was, it turned out he was not who he claimed to be,” said MSgt. Gary Knight, Oklahoma City Police Department. “They were checking him in our computer to get the rest of his information w they noticed that the person he [was] claiming to be [was] different than the person he really is. In other words, he’s giving them false information about his identity,” he added.


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