recommended reading

FBI builds facial recognition app

FBI special agent Richard Deslauriers, right, speaks during a news conference about their hunt for fugitives James "Whitey" Bulger and Catherine Greig in 2011.  The FBIs facial recognition app would help identify criminal suspects in the field.

FBI special agent Richard Deslauriers, right, speaks during a news conference about their hunt for fugitives James "Whitey" Bulger and Catherine Greig in 2011. The FBIs facial recognition app would help identify criminal suspects in the field. // Michael Dwyer/AP

The FBI is creating a mobile tool for collecting facial images, iris scans and other biometric indicators to tag suspects in the field, according to federal acquisition documents.

Authorities are two years away from completing a $1 billion facial recognition system that will modernize the bureau’s 13-year-old biometric fingerprint database. The envisioned app will be able to contribute to the system’s growing compilation of crime scene photos, iris scans police file and other digitized images of physical traits.

The software is aimed at providing “FBI users the tools needed in order to access the biometric identification power of the U.S. government in real time, at any point on the planet in support of operations,” a Nov. 6 solicitation notice states. The bureau already has a biometric-enabled laptop developed in 2010 that consists of a fingerprint and an iris scanner, camera, military battery, and either a wireless adaptor or satellite communications connection.

Now, federal agents want the ability to hunt criminals on foot and quickly nail down traits revealing who they are and what they have done in the past -- and save that information in a dossier for future reference. So the FBI is vetting software that would add the same biometric features available on laptops to smaller wireless devices, officials said. The project intends “to establish a mobile biometric handheld software solution for capturing biometric and biographical data,” the notice states.

The planned app will let agents disable or add specific data collection functions, including “camera integration, fingerprint capture devices, integrity checks for fingerprints and biographic verification features,” depending on the nature of their pursuit.

The deadline for companies to submit software proposals is Nov. 26.

The Homeland Security Department maintains a biometric database that interfaces with the FBI system to monitor the entry and exit of potentially dangerous foreign nationals. On Wednesday, a DHS advisory committee presented officials with draft recommendations for ensuring privacy is protected when foreigners’ digital traits are collected and shared.

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Modernizing IT for Mission Success

    Surveying Federal and Defense Leaders on Priorities and Challenges at the Tactical Edge

    Download
  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

    Download
  • Effective Ransomware Response

    This whitepaper provides an overview and understanding of ransomware and how to successfully combat it.

    Download
  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

    Download
  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.