Facial Recognition Software

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What Does Facial Recognition Software Mean?

Facial recognition software is an application that can be used to automatically identify or verify individuals from video frame or digital images. Some facial recognition software uses algorithms that analyze specific facial features, such as the relative position, size and shape of a person’s nose, eyes, jaw and cheekbones.

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Unlike fingerprinting and voice recognition, facial recognition software yields nearly instant results because subject consent is not required. Facial recognition software is primarily used as a protective security measure and for verifying personnel activities, such as attendance, computer access or traffic in secure work environments.

Facial recognition software is also known as a facial recognition system or face recognition software.

Techopedia Explains Facial Recognition Software

Some of the potential uses of facial recognition software include:

  • To prevent voter fraud during elections
  • At ATMs instead of a PIN
  • As a computer login

Successful deployments include:

  • The German Federal Police employs a facial recognition system on a voluntary basis, which allows members to pass through the completely automated border security system in the Frankfurt International Airport.
  • The German Federal Criminal Police Office provides facial recognition on mugshot pictures for every German police agency.
  • The Australian Customs Service department uses a computerized border processing system known as SmartGate, which includes facial recognition software to compare the passport holder’s face with the image in the passport to certify that the correct owner is carrying the passport.
  • The U.S. State Department uses a large face recognition system with more than 75 million photographs, which is regularly used to process visas.
  • Almost all casinos employ a face recognition system to identify card counters or doubtful personalities in their black list.
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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert
Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.