We are witnessing a world where biometric facial authentication has gained significant prominence as a cyber-physical security measure. It has become the preferred method of security since the COVID-19 pandemic due to the contactless nature and ease of deployment. The uses of facial authentication are widespread across varying levels of security. Ranging from unlocking your phone to securing critical data infrastructure, facial authentication has become a widely adopted method for verifying identity. 

Despite the projected growth of the facial authentication market to reach $16.74 billion by 2030, there are still misconceptions among some stakeholders which prevent organizations from embracing this method. One significant hurdle preventing businesses from embracing facial authentication technology is its frequent confusion with facial recognition.  

Facial Recognition: Matching Identity 

Modern facial recognition software operates by capturing images or videos acquired from cameras, often without the explicit knowledge or consent of the individuals. These collected visuals are then used to construct detailed biometric profiles or templates. Once these biometric templates are generated, the facial recognition software analyzes them, comparing them against other templates in vast databases or real-time video feeds. This recognition process is frequently executed without the explicit consent or knowledge of the individuals whose data is being used. In simple terms, modern facial recognition technology involves the covert collection of visual data, its transformation into biometric profiles, and then analysis of those profiles to identify people, often without the subject’s informed consent.  

This approach significantly contrasts with facial authentication, where the user’s face serves as their unique credential, granting secure access to their critical assets. 

Facial recognition has become controversial due to its use in law enforcement and by companies that collect and store biometric data of their employees without consent. The collection of biometric data without user consent breaks various compliance regulations such as the Illinois Biometric Privacy Act (BIPA), GDPR, California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), Texas Capture or Use of Biometric Identifier Act (CUBI), and other industry and region-specific regulations. 

Facial Authentication: Verifying Identity 

The key difference between facial authentication and facial recognition is facial authentication requires the user to be an active and engaged participant. To achieve facial authentication, a series of selfies and/or valid government ID are used to create the biometric template with the user’s consent. The template is then compared to the user’s face during the authentication process. Facial recognition systems create templates without any user participation and can create matches for anyone passing a camera or device. Facial authentication systems allow for higher identity assurance and regulatory compliance because the user is actively participating in the enrolment process and is prompted to create a template match instead of attempting to find a match from an extensive database, which leaves room for error and is considered illegal in some states such as Illinois, California, and Texas. 

BioConnect’s Trust Platform combines cutting-edge facial authentication technology and regulatory compliance like never before. BioConnect offers organizations the ability to be compliant by introducing the Consent Tracking feature. Consent Tracking ensures that the user is an active participant in the enrolment process while also ensuring that consent has been collected. Consent tracking can also provide a user the legal right to remove their biometric data from the system upon request and receive confirmation that their data was deleted.  

This feature, among others within the BioConnect Platform, equip your organization to meet region-specific regulations as well as industry-specific regulations such as HIPAA, NERC-SIP, PCI DSS.  

Explore BioConnect’s Mobile Authenticator 

BioConnect’s Trust Platform offers both mobile and reader authenticators for facial verification. In addition to biometrics, BioConnect also enables customers to utilize their existing IT-Trusted digital authenticators such as DUO, OKTA, and PING ID for physical access. 

To learn more about BioConnect’s Facial Authentication options, talk to one of our experts!