Hollywood movies often depict high-tech biometric systems that can scan your face, eyes, or fingerprints from a surveillance camera and instantly pull up all of your information. Most people take this type of technology to be science fiction, doubting that the technology that we have today is cable of such feats. However, the truth is that it is not only capable, but this technology already exists.
According to Network World, the FBI already has a fully capable system that can match any name with a face along with other biometric identifiers such as fingerprints, palms, iris scans, and voice recordings. This technology is called the Next Generation Identification system and testing on it is set to begin by mid-January, 2012 in Michigan, Washington, Florida, and North Carolina. Following the two-year testing and debugging period, the FBI plans on releasing this system on a nationwide scale to all criminal justice professionals in 2014.
This biometric identification system will not only be able to scan a surveillance camera feed for relevant information, but it will also be able to scan any image of a person, whether it is a photo, video, or even a description of a personal feature such as a tattoo, scar, or any other marks that will help identify certain persons of interest. It will then reach into all of its databases, which will pull in personal information from multiple databases like the DMV’s, and within seconds have a complete profile of the person being searched for.
The FBI states this system will be used for identifying persons of interests: fugitives, witness or suspects in serious crimes, missing persons, and other people that might pose a threat to the nation. However, as this technology will soon be available to all criminal justice professionals, we’ll just have to wait and see how it will be used.