NCJTC and Biometrica Partner to Train Law Enforcement in Facial Recognition


The National Criminal Justice Training Center (NCJTC) at Fox Valley Technical College has entered into a new collaboration on teaching the use of facial recognition with security-focused technology company Biometrica.

The collaboration will see the NCJTC and Biometrica pilot a foundation course to train law enforcement in the understanding and ethical use of facial recognition (FR) and big data technologies for critical investigations.

“The technology holds great promise for aiding investigations of all kinds, including crimes related to missing and exploited children,” said NCJTC Executive Director Bradley Russ.

Biometrica CEO Wyly Wade echoed Russ’ point, “We’re working on Big Data, using FR and seeing the tremendous good it can do, especially for child safety and child protection. vulnerable adults, if used correctly.”

However, the executive also cautions against using these technologies without accountability or guidelines.

“The mistrust isn’t just between law enforcement and communities, especially those of color, it’s also between tech companies and everyone else. We are not big tech. We’re small tech,” adds Wade.

“But we wanted to try and rebuild some of that trust by working with the NCJTC, who are great at what they do, helping them train law enforcement in the use of Big Data and FRs, establishing ethical use protocols and initiate positive change. ”

Russ reinforced Wade’s point about these technologies requiring training and guidance.

“You don’t give an officer a firearm without proper training, backed up by use of force policies that define acceptable use in various circumstances. It should work the same way with technology-based tools and information,” he adds.

“Give officers the tools they need to improve their investigative abilities in a technology-dominated world, but after they’ve been properly trained in the proper use of those tools.”

Public perception is also about DHS

The ethical implications of deploying biometric technologies by law enforcement were also discussed in a GovConWire blog post by Shonnie Lyon, director of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Biometric Identity Management.

In the article, Lyon acknowledged that as DHS transitions from its legacy biometric system to advanced homeland recognition technology (HART), public perception and connected privacy concerns remain a key area. to address.

To that end, the security expert clarified that DHS does not use facial recognition for surveillance purposes, only for investigations.

Lyon also attempts to address issues related to biographical and demographic biases in facial recognition applications.

“Biometric systems have to be trained on something, right? So the data set you’re using actually has a huge impact on whether or not you can identify faces from a wide array of demographics,” Lyon said.

“The better or broader your data set, the better your algorithm will be.”

Article topics

best practices | biometric identification | Biometrics | biometrics | criminal identification | DHS | education | ethics | facial recognition | police


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