Facial Recognition Systems Pushed as Crime Prevention

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At a MotoMart convenience store in St. Louis, you can’t enter at night unless you look into the camera. If your face is obscured by a mask, face or hood, the door stays locked. If the camera gets a good look at you, it lets you in. The store is piloting a facial recognition system designed by a trio of current and former police officers who decided they’d rather prevent crimes than investigate them, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Their company, Blue Line Technology, has installed cameras with its software at several places around town. It hopes to sell between 300 and 400 systems this year.

Tech giants including Apple, Facebook and Google are in the facial-recognition business, and the founders of Blue Line say their security focus and their patent-pending software, which can process an image and match it to a database in a split second, should provide a lucrative niche. The company says that a corporate data center, for example, could bolster security by adding facial recognition. The cameras would prevent someone with a stolen, forged or borrowed ID card from gaining access. A day care center or hospital nursery could allow parents and staff in while keeping unauthorized strangers out.

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