Border officials dont have data to address racial bias in facial recognition

first_img Facial recognition Facial recognition is going to be everywhere Share your voice Tags Gender and race pose a challenge for facial recognition. Studies have shown the technology has a harder time identifying women and people with darker skin. Civil rights advocates warn that the shortcomings could adversely affect minorities. Several airports and airlines have rolled out the biometric tech across the US, offering a faster way to board your flights. The technology scans a traveler’s face and matches it with a passport photo provided to the airlines by the State Department. It’ll be used in the top 20 US airports by 2021. CBP says it has a match rate in the high 90th percentile, while a study from the DHS’ Office of Inspector General found that it had a match rate closer to 85%. Customs and Border Protection says the system is getting better. A spokesman for the agency noted that the OIG study drew from a demo in 2017 that looked at the potential for the Traveler Verification Service.”In the current deployment of TVS,” the spokesman said, “CBP has been able to successfully photograph and match over 98% of travelers who have photos in U.S. Government systems.”In addition, CBP is working with the National Institutes of Standards and Technology to analyze the performance of face-matching tech, “including impacts due to traveler demographics and image quality,” the spokesman said. A lack of diverse data is what led to racial bias with facial recognition to begin with. Experts have suggested that photo databases for facial recognition could be using more images of white people than people of color, which skews how effective the technology is for minorities.  Jake Laperruque, a senior counsel at the Constitution Project, is concerned that the agency is turning a blind eye to the potential for racial bias at airports.”The comments reflect a troubling lack of concern about well-documented problem of facial recognition systems having higher error rates for people of color,” Laperruque said in an email. “CBP can’t simply ignore a serious issue and take a ‘see no evil approach’ — if they’re not willing to confront serious civil rights problems and deal with them, they shouldn’t be trusted to operate a program like this.”  Originally published May 6.Updated May 8: Added comment from a CBP spokesman. 10 Comments A woman boarding an SAS flight to Copenhagen goes through facial recognition verification system VeriScan at Dulles International Airport in  Virginia. Jim Watson / AFP/Getty Images Facial recognition technology is prone to errors, and when it comes to racial bias at airports, there’s a good chance it’s not learning from its mistakes. Debra Danisek, a privacy officer with US Customs and Border Protection, talked to an audience Friday at the International Association of Privacy Professionals Summit about what data its facial recognition tech collects — but more importantly, what data it doesn’t collect.”In terms of ‘Does this technology have a different impact on different racial groups?’ we don’t collect that sort of data,” Danisek said. “In terms of keeping metrics on which groups are more affected, we wouldn’t have those metrics to begin with.” In other words, while the CBP does collect data that’s available on people’s passports — age, gender and citizenship — to help improve its facial recognition algorithm, it doesn’t gather data for race and ethnicity, even when a passenger is misidentified.So the CBP doesn’t know when there’s a mismatch based on a person’s skin color. It’s relying on reports from the Department of Homeland Security’s Redress program to identify when that happens.  “If they notice we have a pattern of folks making complaints this process, then we would investigate,” Danisek said. Now playing: Watch this: Politics Security 3:28last_img read more

Flipkart in early talks to buy stake in BookMyShow in push against

first_imgThe logo of India’s largest e-commerce firm Flipkart is seen on the facade of the company’s headquarters in Bengaluru on July 7, 2017. REUTERS/Abhishek N ChinnappaHomegrown e-commerce giant Flipkart is in early talks to buy a large minority stake in online ticket booking company BookMyShow, as it seeks to attract more people and retain old customers.Flipkart wants to invest fresh capital into BookMyShow and also buy shares from some of its investors. But, there were no reports on the amount that Flipkart plans to invest in BookMyShow, Economic Times reported.The last round of funding for BookMyShow came from Stripes Group at Rs 550 crore, which was one of the largest funding rounds for any internet company this year. Accel Partners, SAIF Partners and Network18 also funded the company at a valuation more than Rs 3,000 crore.Accel is an investor in Flipkart as well. According to the reports, Flipkart had initially planned to buy BookMyShow. However, a stake sale is more likely than an outright sale.Reports said last month BookMyShow posted a profit of Rs 3.17 crore for the financial year 2016. But this profit came after the company reported losses for two consecutive fiscal years. It had posted Rs 13.52 crore loss in fiscal year 2015 and Rs 3.98 crore loss in FY14.The sales growth took a hit mainly because of a push by Paytm into movie tickets. But over the past few months, BookMyShow has limped back to growth and it still controls a majority of movie ticket bookings.Now, a partnership with the ticketing market leader BookMyShow will give Flipkart, which is also building its payment platform Phonepe, a big role in the ticketing market.  Bookmyshow.comBookMyShow is also focusing on local language content for both its video and audio platforms to penetrate tier 2 and tier 3 cities, a move that will be helpful for Flipkart as it seeks to serve deeper in the smaller areas.Flipkart – India’s most acquisitive companyFilpkart has raised nearly $3 billion in two tranches this year from SoftBank Group Corp, Tencent Holdings and others. The online retailer plans to pursue more Mergers and Acquisitions (M&A) deals.Last month, Flipkart bought F1 Info solutions, which offers repair services for mobiles and electronics, for an undisclosed amount.Flipkart is India’s most acquisitive internet firm. Since 2007, it has bought more than 20 companies. Its largest acquisition till now is that of online retailer Myntra for more than $330 million in May 2014. Earlier this year, the company also tried to buy its smaller rival Snapdeal, but the deal failed because of differences over valuation.last_img read more