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Old 01-09-2002, 06:26 PM   #1
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Face-recognition machines coming to airports

Face-recognition machines coming to airports

Quote:
WASHINGTON - Face-recognition technology, now being lined up for use in airports, might be capable of finding Osama bin Laden if he showed up at a U.S. airport to catch a flight.

But critics say there's no high-tech quick fix that can ferret out the ordinary terrorist from the ranks of millions of Americans on the move - and error rates on the machines are so great it's just as likely to be the innocent traveler who trips off the alarm.

Michael Thieme, a senior consultant with the International Biometric Group, a New York firm that analyzes the industry, said face-recognition technology can be effective under the best conditions, where the camera gets a good frontal picture and turns it into a complex mathematical formula that matches that of a picture stored in its data bank.

But the CIA doesn't have good pictures of most wanted al Qaeda terrorists to put in a data bank. Even on some of the most wanted, like the Taliban's one-eyed spiritual leader Mullah Omar, on whom there is a $5 million reward, the U.S. government has just a grainy picture of Omar in the back seat of his limousine taken from a distance.
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Old 01-09-2002, 06:26 PM   #2
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Face-recognition machines coming to airports

Face-recognition machines coming to airports

Quote:
WASHINGTON - Face-recognition technology, now being lined up for use in airports, might be capable of finding Osama bin Laden if he showed up at a U.S. airport to catch a flight.

But critics say there's no high-tech quick fix that can ferret out the ordinary terrorist from the ranks of millions of Americans on the move - and error rates on the machines are so great it's just as likely to be the innocent traveler who trips off the alarm.

Michael Thieme, a senior consultant with the International Biometric Group, a New York firm that analyzes the industry, said face-recognition technology can be effective under the best conditions, where the camera gets a good frontal picture and turns it into a complex mathematical formula that matches that of a picture stored in its data bank.

But the CIA doesn't have good pictures of most wanted al Qaeda terrorists to put in a data bank. Even on some of the most wanted, like the Taliban's one-eyed spiritual leader Mullah Omar, on whom there is a $5 million reward, the U.S. government has just a grainy picture of Omar in the back seat of his limousine taken from a distance.
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