Demystifying and Destigmatizing Facial Recognition: An Education on the Use of Facial Recognition in Identity Proofing

Demystifying and Destigmatizing Facial Recognition: An Education on the Use of Facial Recognition in Identity Proofing

When major players like IBM start pulling out of the facial recognition market, it makes sense to pause and take a deeper look to understand the controversy. Headlines are touting alarms of citizen surveillance that have led to very unsettling outcomes with the use of facial recognition technology. But this is not the way a vast majority of providers, including Acuant, use the technology.

At Acuant, our entire mission is to power trust. We build our platform to fight fraud and be consumer friendly- all with privacy by design to protect PII (personally identifiable information). Our identity verification solutions engage end-to-end encryption never storing data or images to protect PII for both business exposure and consumer protection.

Acuant FaceID, facial recognition match with liveness test options, is used to power millions of trusted transactions globally each day. The adoption of facial recognition technology as a way to use your unique face as a verification method went mainstream with the iPhone. Today consumers use it to login to almost every secured app as a way to establish that they are truly who they claim to be. Acuant provides facial recognition match to allow businesses and consumers to safely transact on any platform, anywhere in the world.


Industry Terms: One-to-Many vs One-to-One,  What’s the Difference? 

One-to-Many: This term refers to comparing a target image with a database of subjects of interest. A person might be identified in a public setting and it does not have to involve consent or knowledge. Facial recognition technology can be combined with closed-circuit television (CCTV), also known as video surveillance and the use of video cameras to scan crowds and match faces against a database of known or suspected criminals. In this instance you do not know if or when this is happening and you cannot opt out, nor do you know how the images are being used, shared or stored.

One-to-One: This term refers to verifying an individual identity by comparing a target image with data held on file to confirm a match. With Acuant, you first quickly capture your government issued ID then take a selfie so that the image can be compared to the one on your ID. Facial recognition technology verifies that there is a match and that you are a real person conducting this transaction right now. You know that the facial recognition match is being done and you “opt in”. And with Acuant, you know that data and images are encrypted and never stored so your PII is protected.


The difference is very clear. One-to-many facial recognition does not have consumer consent and is quite controversial. Many US cities are banning it and it faces global scrutiny. One-to-one facial recognition on the other hand provides secure identity verification that is easily executable for consumers. The benefit of using facial recognition technology as an identity verification method to streamline and safeguard workflows globally- especially when it comes to increasingly remote transactions- is evident.

Online crime is growing, both in the number of attacks and in the sophistication of the tactics used by international criminals. A person’s unique face is the one of the most secure ways of verifying identity and layered with document authentication (Acuant AssureID™)- it allows for secure and easy multi-factor authentication where other methods have many pitfalls.

  • Knowledge-based authentication (KBA) such as passwords and answers to random questions can be shared or stolen and are hard to recall
  • Device-based authentication such as mobile phones or tokens must be carried around and can be stolen or lost
  • Other biometric identifiers such as irises or fingerprints are largely not included in driver’s licenses or passports today


One thing is certain, facial recognition as identity verification offers security, simplicity and privacy in a digital world. Contact us to learn more about Acuant FaceID solutions for every industry. We offer 3 Classes with different liveness test options (including passive liveness) and algorithms that are NIST tested and iBeta Certified.

Learn more about our partnership with iProov for the most robust solution to thwart fraud in facial recognition by preventing deepfakes, video replay and other spoofing methods from passing.



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