2020, by which time the number of IoT devices will increase to about 30 billion globally. If we also include sensors, that number will grow to several trillion. The wave of digitization is an irreversible trend, and the popularity of the Internet and mobile phones will continue to grow exponentially in every corner of the world. 3
at a deeper level in an aim to create new value and enhance lives and businesses through digital transformation. NEC visualizes a wide range of digitized data using IoT technology and communications infrastructure, then uses AI technology to analyze vast amounts of data that exceeds human processing capability. These processes enable NEC to accumulate and share knowledge and wisdom, and add new meaning to people, things, and contexts. Then, by returning easy-to-understand prescriptions to the real world, NEC provides customers with the value of connectivity. 5
regular part of our everyday lives, and everyone in the world can use services with peace of mind. Let me introduce three cases as examples. First, envision a world several years into the future in which the sharing economy has become widespread. With the shrinking work force in Japan and other developed countries, social sharing businesses such as babysitting and helper services is becoming prevalent. If the babysitting service you reserved, for instance, begins at a time you are not at home, could you trust that the person who comes to your door is the babysitter you actually requested? You probably wouldn’t feel comfortable giving this person the key to your home that could easily be copied. Even in cases such as these, the face recognition system can be used to ensure that the person who comes to your door is indeed someone you can trust, and you can let them in without giving them the physical key. The requester, which is you in this case, is the only person with access to the one-time key. Next, let’s look at a world where you can use services without having to wait. At airports, stadiums, or during an overseas trip, you can pass through gates and take time to enjoy yourself without having to wait in line. NEC’s walk-through identification system and other similar technologies are solutions that will enable better recognition accuracy and convenience. In addition, you will have access to services without having to carry around official certifications or seals. Even during a large-scale disaster when you may not have any means to prove your identity, your biometric information will provide the necessary proof to withdraw money from your bank account, or utilize other services. The final example is a world in which you will not have to worry about forgetting, losing, or leaking your personal information, because your attributes will be your means of identification. The social damage caused by the leakage of personal information is increasing rapidly. These risks can be minimized through the utilization of biometric authentication. 6
features. There are number of features that can be obtained. Enclosed within the blue area are the technologies that NEC is considering to apply over a wide range of use cases. That is, NEC is planning to develop businesses within the areas that are highly balanced in terms of both convenience and accuracy. In addition, NEC plans to use authentication technologies suited to customer needs and social backgrounds and combine these as required. 8
years of experience in research and development. Some typical examples of NEC’s technologies include fingerprint recognition and face recognition, which is applied within society following a process of research and development. Going forward, we will pursue multi-modal verification using a combination of multiple biometric modalities that will enable us to respond to the diverse needs of users and requests for enhanced accuracy. 9
only has a long history, but has constantly led the world with its technological capabilities. For the fingerprint recognition technology on the left, NEC ranked No.1 in the world a total of eight times in the benchmark tests for fingerprint recognition technology conducted by a US government organization. For the face recognition on the right, although the benchmark test itself has a shorter history than for the fingerprint recognition, NEC has ranked No.1 in the world four consecutive times. In the recently conducted Face In Video Evaluation, which is a recognition-based contest based not on static images but on video images, NEC achieved an overwhelming No.1 position for its high precision quality. Sitting still and facing straight into the camera with your eyes open as if you are taking an ID photo is not necessarily the only way to use face recognition to visualize the real world. When street cameras are used, values must be created through non-cooperative recognition where pedestrians are not aware of cameras. Therefore, in a lot of the cases, images are more likely video images with the face partially hidden or not facing the camera. The strength of NEC’s technology is its high-precision recognition capability even under such severe conditions. 10
society through its advanced fingerprint recognition and face recognition technology. However, biometric authentication goes beyond just fingerprints and faces. NEC will continue to create value by using biometric information such as iris, voice, shape of the inner ear, and palmprint for personal authentication. 11
society. Along with the convenience, however, will come many issues such as enabling identity theft and malicious cyber attacks. NEC is working to establish an advanced authentication system that combines information from multiple biometric traits and uses personal attributes as a key to opening the gateway to the digital world. By eliminating the risks of identity theft and malicious attacks, we aim to maximize the convenience of the digital world. NEC has named its suite of biometric authentication solutions as “Bio-Idiom,” and will work towards making them available to as many users as possible going forward. IDiom holds the meaning of not only “IDentification” but also “idiom.” Idioms, in other words, integrate multiple words to add new meaning and value. Bio-IDiom, which identifies each individual as a single unique individual, welcomes you to the world in which users can maximally leverage what digital has to offer. 12
individuals using biometric information collected from face recognition and other technologies. Every one of NEC’s technologies is the world’s No. 1 or the world’s only one of its kind. Although “identity theft” and “malicious attacks” can be addressed by using the biometrics identification, simply having advanced technology cannot provide the value of security from the vicious spiral of technical competition between hackers and vendors. NEC can improve the identification precision dramatically by combining individual biometric authentication technologies according to the customer’s requirements, such as combining face recognition with iris recognition, or fingerprint recognition with voice recognition. This is a significant strength of NEC. By combining modals for authentication, an entirely new value can be provided. For instance, take the smart speaker, which are rapidly growing in popularity. Applications that can be realized through the use of a smart speaker are increasing. Voice recognition can be used easily to obtain information from the Internet. In the near future where financial settlement can be executed by a smart speaker for online shopping and financial transactions over the Internet, the world will expand to the new phase where digital information is fully utilized in a secure environment that combines voice recognition with face recognition or iris identification. NEC creates social value through the widespread provision of these and other biometric authentication technologies. 13
security of society by using biometric authentication technology in areas such as criminal AFIS, watchlist detection, and immigration control. Going forward, we plan to use a wider range of digital data and combine them with our AI technology to enable us to provide advanced solutions such as incident prediction and trend analysis. As an example, we are aiming to create new value through the realization of a more efficient and equal society by using fraud detection, preventing fraudulent receipt of subsidies due to identity theft, and improving community services. To achieve these goals and achieve further growth, we plan to expand the area of safety business within the administration system that generates digital data. In addition, we will leverage our know-how in the area of public safety to increase the solutions we offer in the areas of transport and enterprise, to not only realize a safe and secure society, but to also promote efficiency and fairness in every aspect of people’s lives. 15
through the use of biometric authentication in response to these trends. This map shows the countries where NEC has installed the biometric authentication system. Through the installation of more than 700 systems in over 70 countries worldwide, we are supporting the safety and security of society through ICT. The systems are mainly used by governments, police, immigration control, and for national ID, and these are some of the typical examples of how biometric authentication is used to support the backbone of the social system. 16
by face recognition. This trial was conducted to verify the feasibility of using face recognition to provide cashless and cardless payment service for items purchased at shops in the Head Office building. NEC is striving to improve technical performance and accumulate operation know-how for use toward future practical application. 17
tickets. As recently reported in the news, ticket scalping has become a serious social problem. NEC’s face recognition solution enables efficient identity verification, prevents scalping, and at the same time, realizes smooth entry. As visitors no longer need to present photo ID, this solution also provides significant merit to the visitors. 18
gate for annual pass holders, Universal Studio Japan gives annual pass holders that VIP feeling by enabling their smooth entry into the park. Visitors swipe their annual pass over the reader, face the monitor, and wait one second for the system to recognize their face. Printing photos on annual passes is no longer required, which helps to significantly reduce the time needed to issue the passes. This solution can prevent the use of annual passes by anyone other than the purchaser if the card gets lost. 19
India, is using the face recognition system to detect persons of interest who enter the hotel. The system compares images of guests who enter the hotel against images of criminals in a database provided by the local police, thereby helping to ensure the safety and security of guests. In India, retaining and training hired staff is difficult, and staff turnover in the service industry is becoming an issue. For this reason, staff members were unable to recognize VIP guests, which led to the provision of inadequate service. The face recognition system deployed by NEC not only identifies persons of interest, but also recognizes VIPs in real time. This enables even new staff members to recognize VIPs and offer high quality service catered to individual needs. 20
The number of international tourists across the world will double from 940 million in 2010 to 1,810 million in 2030. (Source: UNWTO Tourism Towards 2030) This means that faster processing, improved customer service, and safe operation will become a necessity more than ever before. NEC has supplied ICT systems to airports in more than 50 countries and regions. The system that is introduced here is the immigration face recognition system at the JFK airport in the U.S. This system enables highly accurate real-time identification of each traveler by comparing images captured by cameras set up at the gates with the facial image stored on the IC chip of the traveler’s passport that was scanned at the automatic gates at immigration. Airports where travelers will not need to wait in line or carry their passports will soon become a reality. 21
The number of international tourists across the world will double from 940 million in 2010 to 1,810 million in 2030. (Source: UNWTO Tourism Towards 2030) This means that faster processing, improved customer service, and safe operation will become a necessity more than ever before. NEC has supplied ICT systems to airports in more than 50 countries and regions. The system that is introduced here is the immigration face recognition system at the JFK airport in the U.S. This system enables highly accurate real-time identification of each traveler by comparing images captured by cameras set up at the gates with the facial image stored on the IC chip of the traveler’s passport that was scanned at the automatic gates at immigration. Airports where travelers will not need to wait in line or carry their passports will soon become a reality. 22
which has a population of 1.2 billion people, it is very difficult to identify individuals and ensure that everyone has fair access to social services. NEC has provided India with a multi-biometrics system that identifies individuals based on multiple attributes such as fingerprint, face, and iris. This system supports the delivery of fair social services to every citizen by preventing double registration within the food supply, employment and tax systems. 23
which has a population of 1.2 billion people, it is very difficult to identify individuals and ensure that everyone has fair access to social services. NEC has provided India with a multi-biometrics system that identifies individuals based on multiple attributes such as fingerprint, face, and iris. This system supports the delivery of fair social services to every citizen by preventing double registration within the food supply, employment and tax systems. 25
Champions League finals that was held in June 2017. A surge of visitors from various countries arrived to enjoy the largest soccer festival in Europe. A crowd of 170,000 soccer fans were packed into the stadium. Mixed into this overwhelming number of spectators were the presence of hooligans and other dangerous individuals. Video face recognition was used to identify these troublemakers, which led to the successful arrest of an individual on the watchlist. This allowed spectators to enjoy the match without any incident. NEC Europe provided the face recognition system to South Wales Police. This system uses “NeoFace,” a face recognition software that identifies individuals from camera images using face recognition technology sporting the world’s No. 1 recognition accuracy (*). This system enables high-speed and highly accurate identification of individuals by comparing images captured from cameras mounted on police vehicles in real-time against approximately 50,000 photos of persons of interest on pre-determined watchlists, including criminals, suspects, and missing persons. This system is currently being used to ensure safety at locations with a high level of people traffic, such as airports and stadiums. It has already been deployed during the week of the UEFA Champions League final held on June 3 at the Wales National Stadium in Cardiff City, and contributed to ensuring the safe management of the event. 26
images photos where faces are captured clearly from a frontal angle. At NEC, we focus on video face recognition to enhance accuracy and expanded application. Bio-IDiom face recognition technology achieves a high level of accuracy even with video images in which the subject is not facing the camera, or the quality is very low. Bio-IDiom accurately recognizes individuals based on the three key technologies that “detect faces”, “extract features”, and “match faces” by verifying features. Face recognition must be able to respond to all conditions, including the lighting, angle of the face, facial expression, and change with age. NEC achieves high-accuracy based on long years of research and development, and experience in installing technologies at various sites. We ranked No. 1 in the world many times in benchmark tests conducted by a US Government organization. Our technology is used in various applications including crime prevention, immigration control, and payments. 28
of the eye. This muscle adjusts the amount of light that enters the retina by changing the size of the pupil in the same way as a diaphragm of a camera. Each individual has an iris with a unique pattern which does not change after it is fully formed by the age 2 or 3. Bio-IDiom recognizes irises at high speed and high precision by excluding the pupils, eyelids, and eyelashes, and digitizing data pertaining to only the iris. The use of an infrared camera allows identification even in dark places. This technology provides a higher level of precision than face recognition and is expected to be used for payments based on electronic money and virtual currency.
A strict identification is possible using these features. NEC commenced research in 1971. We have the longest history in Bio-IDiom and received the highest ranking in the world many times from a US Government organization. This is the most utilized biometric authentication technology around the world, and is used for such applications as crime investigation, immigration, and national ID system.
features. This technology makes fraud difficult as it uses vein information inside a finger. NEC developed a composite identification product, “finger hybrid identification,” that combines this technology with fingerprint recognition. This product is mainly used in the Government offices and the private sector, where a high level of security is required.
are unique to individuals. This technology can identify individuals without depending on location or language, and can identify even voice changes due to having a cold and other situations. This technology can be used if a telephone, a smart phone, or a microphone is available, and is expected to be applied for use in call centers, communication robots, and smart speakers that are becoming prevalent.
sending a sound to the ear canal from an earphone and measuring the acoustic echo. The process from transmission and reception of a sound to identification is completed in about a second. This technology is suitable for situations that require “constant identification,” where identity verification is continued without the person being conscious of its use. For instance, this technology is useful for impersonators when guarding VIPs. Installing the ear acoustic identification technology in a security communication earphone, can help detect terrorists who switch places with authorized personnel.