Whoever thought biometrics and facial recognition would be used in the frontlines of police operations? Here’s to fighting crime with technology!
The Northern Territory Police Force in Australia recently extended its partnership with a technology firm to install an advanced forensic biometrics recognition solution within their CCTV infrastructure. This software is said to improve police activities and keep the citizens of the territory safer.
The specific software is being adopted across the Police Force, and Fire and Emergency Services to combat criminal activity and provide better protection. The technology provider worked in tandem with the Northern Territory Police to make sure the technology met operational requirement.
"This new facial recognition software has already helped police identify or rule out suspects and it is exciting to see it move to the next phase," stated Adam Giles, Chief Minister of the Northern Territory.
In the process of selecting a vendor, the government looked to the provider with the highest performance evaluation. This was determined through a series of tests conducted by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology.
Before confirming the second phase of this partnership, the Northern Territory ran a trial early 2015. The system was able to effectively identify about 300 individuals from photos and CCTV footage.
The advantage of using facial recognition over fingerprint identification is that the subject does not have to be in physical reach to retrieve the information necessary. Since the facial recognition system has been incorporated, 100,000 images have been duplicated from the prevailing Police information holdings.
"Like fingerprinting, facial recognition is a form of identification that allows a computer to quickly match similar faces based on facial features," Police Minister Peter Chandler stated.
"Footage or images captured on CCTV footage are submitted to NT Police's facial recognition team who can load it into the facial recognition system for analysis and comparison with existing images in the database," stated Mr. Chandler.
Northern Territory police will be issued 1,330 tablets by the government. The department continues to invest in mobile technology and image capture solutions to improve their operations. Other departments are looking at Northern Territory as a model for how facial technology can be incorporated in their operations.