The State of Biometrics and Analytics

New technologies have given integrators more options than ever before. Access control featuring biometrics and the advanced capabilities of video analytics are creating smarter cities. BCDVideo Vice President Tom Larson discusses the role biometrics and analytics play in video surveillance.

Tom Larson

Tom Larson,
BCDVideo Vice President

Skip ahead using the times listed.

  • What is the status of biometrics in the security market? (0:15)
  • Where do you see biometrics going in the next year? (1:17)
  • What are the main challenges with biometrics today? (1:55)
  • How are biometrics and analytics being used in the security industry? (2:20)
  • What are more uses for video analytics in security? (4:04)
  • How can biometrics and analytics be used together? (5:39)
  • How has the security market adapted for video analytics? (6:12)

Biometrics in the Security Market

We’ve seen biometrics for the past 8-10 years, whether we’re talking about hand geometry readers or iris readers, the biometrics base has been out there. It’s getting better. The adoption rate has been slow due to the accuracy of biometrics.

As other industries have impacted the biometrics market, the accuracy has become much better. End users are seeing this as a benefit. Instead of using traditional access control cards, now they can use thumbprint readers, iris readers, etc. It’s something that’s definitely coming along quickly.

Where will Biometrics be in a Year?

We’ll see more because of cybersecurity and the need to secure buildings. We will see a lot more two-factor authentication. To get into sensitive areas of the building, you may need to use a biometric scanner on top of using your access control card. I think you will see more and more of that type of solution being used.

What are the Main Challenges with Biometrics?

There are not a lot of companies in our space doing it and doing it well. As more people are looking for it, there are limited vendors offering biometrics. 

How are Biometrics and Analytics Being Used?

Analytics is really erupting in the market, more so than biometrics. There only so many biometric options being used: fingerprint, iris, so there are limitations. Being with iris, you have to literally put your head up to a goggle to grab a reading.

Analytics is something that is more relevant and erupting very quickly because we are, in some ways, adapting analytics that Google may be using for other things. Or you see technology that Facebook is using where it’s identifying people in pictures. We’re taking that technology and adapting for video surveillance. Now, our analytics are very accurate.

We have an incredible amount of video data, in the neighborhood of 1000 Petabytes a day being recorded around the world. How do we search it? A human cannot search that. There’s just too much data, so we need to run analytics through that video to produce quality searches.

What are More Uses for Video Analytics?

We can look at data over a seven day period and ask the system to produce all red cars that went through a gate. Within seconds, it produces a bunch of clips of all the red cars that went through the gate in the last seven days. From there they can review it very quickly and find what they were looking for. Other uses include people counting. How many people were on the scene? How many people left? Alerts can be set based on that.

License plate reading is another use. We see that a lot in the trucking industry. We have high volumes of trucks coming in and out of distribution centers. It gets log jammed if a human has to check the plates to check them all in. If the semis’ plates are in the system already, we know when that semi should be arriving and can even tell the driver which dock to go use all without human intervention.

How can Biometrics and Analytics work Together?

If you have biometric data for a person and analytics, you can use those as a crosscheck. For example, everyone has a driver’s license. That photo is in a database that can be used to crosscheck people’s faces going through an airport.

How has Security adapted to Video Analytics?

Simple analytics has shifted to be run in the cameras which are driving the cost down. Some of the advanced analytics still have to be run on a server. This costs quite a bit. As cameras become more powerful, that will allow more complex analytics to be run in the camera. At some point, every camera will have analytics built in. Instead of simply being an imager, cameras will be an imager with advanced features already built in at a reasonable cost.

To watch more interviews with BCDVideo team members, check out the links below:

Challenges in Security – BCDVideo Server and Storage Specialist, Adam Janic

What Makes a Great Leader? - BCDVideo President/CEO, Jeff Burgess

How to Determine Network Security - Mike Wagner

Standard or Fad: Mobile Security - BCDVideo Vice President, Tom Larson

Standard or Fad: Cloud Storage - BCDVideo Vice President, Tom Larson

Challenges in Cybersecurity - BCDVideo Vice President, Tom Larson