Hi-Tech Security Solutions hosted a round-table specifically to look at what is happening in the world of secure identity verification and authentication.

Whether it is via phishing or more traditional means, identity theft is a crime that plagues everyone, rich and poor. The seeming ease of stealing an identity has led to many considering and reconsidering the issues of identity verification and authentication, whether you are signing into social media, trying to retain some privacy online, accessing your bank account or coming in the door.

iiDENTIFii on an upward trajectory, read more.

Hi-Tech Security Solutions hosted a roundtable specifically to look at what is happening in the world of identity verification and authentication. Our goal was to cover the basics of what exactly verification and authentication are and to look at identity technologies and solutions that are fit for the financial industry, but to also cover a broader spectrum including other digital and physical access control requirements. (It should be noted that the round-table took place before the COVID-19 ‘State of Disaster’ was declared. – Ed.)

For the round-table, we had five guests on site, one connected via conference call, and one who couldn’t make it and sent through written answers to a few questions we had. The on-site guests were: • Eric Chen: senior solutions engineer from Dahua Technologies. Dahua has been in the CCTV space for more than 20 years and it has used its experience to move into the facial recognition market of late, and has been involved in safe city initiatives in various countries.

Hendrik Combrinck: chief executive officer of ZKTeco. ZKTeco has been in the biometric market for over 20 years and has more recently moved into areas such as national identities where authentication and verification are critical.

Deon Janse Van Rensburg: Africa manager for ViRDI Tech. ViRDI has been in South Africa for around 15 years and has been focused more on access control and human management systems and solutions, boasting the largest biometric footprint for a single client in Africa.

Walter Rautenbach: managing director of neaMetrics (the Suprema distributor in SA). neaMetrics has been involved in identity verification projects since 2004, including the Home Affairs conversion of identity records to digital format (i.e., biometrics) as well as the Afiswitch criminal clearance solution and more. • Marco Wagener: is from iiDENTIFii, a fairly new South African company that specialises in remote or mobile identity verification technologies that have been adopted by many banks in the country. The technology not only verifies people’s identities remotely via facial recognition, but also recognises the official South African identity documents in the process. (Read more at https://www.securitysa. com/9181r.)

Gur Geva: also from iiDENTIFii, joined via conference call. Nicolas Garcia from IDEMIA was unable to make the round-table.

Most, if not all readers will have come across biometric identification technologies in businesses where they are used for access control or time and attendance functions, among others; many will also have seen banks using fingerprint verification to identify people by cross referencing their fingerprint biometrics with Home Affairs.

In addition, there are few readers which will not have come across and used biometric authentication, either fingerprint or facial, on today’s mobile devices. But there is a difference when talking about using biometrics at the door and giving them access to a building, as compared to using it in a bank to authorise transactions, or in government to get a new passport. Our first question to the round-table was to highlight the difference between authenticating a user and verifying them.

And, of course, with ‘touchless’ facial recognition apparently a good solution in light of the coronavirus, how different are authentication and verification from ‘recognition’? Janse van Rensburg explains that from a ViRDI perspective, verifying a person’s identity usually involves multi-factor authentication, such as a card and biometrics, or a PIN and biometrics, and then comparing the data input with one individual record on the database. In other words, the individual claims to be someone and that person’s existing data is compared to the data provided at the terminal or access point.

Download the article for the full discussion.