Are you the real you?

Recently many people have been exposed to different biometrics tactics in a positive way whether they know it or not. Many phones now have you use your fingerprint to unlock your phone, or to complete a transaction as opposed to using a alpha-numeric password. This is a more secure way to keep your phone and its contents private from others. While every biometric is supposed to enhance your privacy and security, some can be used in the opposite way. Facial Recognition  is a feature meant to be used to verify you are who you proclaim to be. As many people do not know, while driving on highways our faces are being scanned from roughly 60 feet away from a camera. Not many people know there are cameras on the highway. Next time you go through and ezpass, or under a bridge simple look up. Recently there was a hoax going around on Facebook, involving a fake app called “Facezam”. This app claimed it could track anyone down by scanning their Facebook photos. While this app is nonexistent, the theory of such a thing is very possible between different apps, and sites. Of all the different biometric features, facial recognition is by far the most dangerous. Other biometrics require permission in to be used (for the most part, excluding the things you see in action movies). Someone can not knowingly take your fingerprint, or take a 3D picture of your eye structure. But when in terms of Facial Recognition, one does not need permission. Any photo of the person that is accessible will be enough. Someone can take your photograph from a distance and you would never know. Every time you use an ATM, you are having your picture taken, to cross check to make sure you are the correct account holder. Pictures of faces are easy to connect to names. Once you have someone’s name, you can essentially find other important information about the person: Their home address, a list of their relatives, their phone number etc. The Russians have developed a system called FindFace, where you take a picture, upload it to their site, and it will give you the results of multiple social media accounts. From there you can copy and paste the individual’s picture to then find out their full name. But that is Russian, there is nothing like that over here. . .is there? In fact there is, and most people use it everyday, its called Facebook. Facebook has facial recognition on their photos when someone uploads them. Ever wonder why that box appears on everyone’s face in your photo? Yes, that is a facial recognition technique. They have developed an algorithm that determines someone’s face in a photo. The truth is that your face is being constantly photographed for facial recognition databases, and your face will be increasingly used for identification behind the scenes without your knowledge or permission. There is a brighter side to all of this. Facial recognition is being used all around the world in a positive light. Take Uber for example. Uber uses real-time face recognition in China and India. Drivers must scan their face before accepting any ride to verify that they aren’t impostors or criminals looking to pick up unsuspecting passengers. So the question really comes, is facial recognition doing more harm, or giving more security to people in the everyday world?

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