A note from the conveners...

There are 4 conveners of this year's workshop on biometrics at the border. Professor Katina Michael is joined by Dr Rob Nicholls, Dr Monique Mann, and Mr Peter Leonard. Katina completed her PhD on the automatic identification trajectory in 2003, Rob is an expert in emerging technology regulation, Monique is writing a book on biometrics, and Peter has for many years consulted in data, technology and the law.

The Social Implications of National Security Workshop is now in its 10th year. This year's workshop is on the theme of Biometrics and Regulation. SINS was originally funded by the ARC Research Network for a Secure Australia. Representative voices from government, industry, and academe. This year's keynote John Kendall from Unisys, Rustom Kanga from iOmniscient, Philip Green QLD Privacy Commissioner, and Elizabeth Tydd NSW Information Commissioner and Open Data Advocate. Come along to this free workshop to be hosted at UOW's Sydney Business School on the 9th August 2017.

The Deployment and Emerging Use of Biometrics in the State of Queensland

Chair/ Panelist: Dr Monique Mann, School of Justice, Queensland University of Technology

Title: Biometrics, Crime and Security: Facial recognition, behavioral profiling and deception detection at the border

Abstract: Each and every person confronted with international travel will face the prospect of his or her biometric information being collected either via CCTV, an e-Smart Gate or a fingerprint scanner. The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has selected facial recognition as the global standard for interoperable biometric passports and there have been moves in Australia towards passport free travel requiring travellers to present only their face at border control. Instead of comparing a face with a facial template stored in an ePassport, the face would be compared against a facial template stored within the Australian Passport Office’s database.

Looking internationally there has been a steady expansion of the use of face recognition technology for border control. In the UK British Airways uses facial recognition scanning at security screening enabling travellers to board planes without the requirement of showing identification documentation. US Customs and Border Protection have been using facial recognition since 2015, with trials expanding initially from Washington to New York airports. More recently there have been proposals for US Customs and Border Protection agents to use drones equipped with facial recognition technology to monitor the border with Mexico. There have been suggestions that US Customs and Border Protection will commence a program known as ‘Biometric Exit’ that scans the faces of individuals departing the US to verify who has left the US, and therefore be able to identify those who overstay their visas.

New technologies are being developed that combine facial recognition with emotion recognition and other second-generation biometrics to identify threats and detect deception. Police have historically used the polygraph for lie detection, however a modern alternative is evolving in the form of the Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessments in Real-Time (AVATAR), currently being developed by the University of Arizona and US Customs and Border Protection. Further, the US Department of Homeland Security is developing Future Attribute Screening Technology (FAST) where an automated robotic interviewer asks questions while assessing biometric information such as facial expressions, voice intonation and inflection to detect deception. A combination of this technology with predictive questioning and access to large and ever expanding databases enables robot-enhanced interrogation at the border.

These automated systems of identification and deception detection have the potential to remove humans from decision-making processes associated with border control. There are a number of concerns about the implementation these technologies, particularly in light of the significant expansion in the collection and storage of personal data coupled with diminishing opportunities for individuals to opt out, and little, if any, limits on data collection and use by border control agents. There are further concerns about an individual’s right to silence, privilege not to self-incriminate and the parameters of legitimate search. This paper foreshadows emerging developments that concern the use of biometrics at the border and in doing so considers associated regulatory prospects and protections.

Monique Mann and Marcus Smith, "Automated Facial Recognition Technology: Recent Developments and Approaches to Oversight", Vol. 40, No. 1, UNSW Law Journal, pp. 121-145. Full paper here. Presentation PDF available here.

Biography: Dr Monique Mann is a lecturer at the School of Justice, Faculty of Law, at the Queensland University of Technology in Brisbane, Australia. She is also a member of the Crime and Justice Research Centre and the Intellectual Property and Innovation Law Research Group at QUT Law. Monique is currently advancing a program of socio-legal research on the intersecting topics of police technology, transnational online policing and surveillance. She is on the Board of Directors of the Australian Privacy Foundation and the Advisory Council of Digital Rights Watch Australia

Emerging Areas in Behavioural Biometrics and Issues of Regulation

Panelist: Philip Green, Queensland Privacy Commissioner

Title: The Deployment and Emerging Use of Biometrics in the State of Queensland

Mr Philip Green, Queensland Privacy Commissioner

Mr Philip Green, Queensland Privacy Commissioner

Abstract: Queensland Privacy Commissioner, Phil Green will discuss deployment and emerging use of biometrics in Queensland State and Local Government as well as at the National Level given his involvement in the proposed intergovernmental agreement on identity matching.  Automated facial recognition and verification systems have been trialled in the Gold Coast and Toowoomba regions, ID scanning has commenced in liquor licensing precincts and Drivers Licence facial recognition has been trialled in Northern Territory and Tasmania. A mooted trail of facial recognition and AI targeting shoplifting is proposed for Brisbane is about to kick off using NZ developed technology called Auror (https://www.auror.co).   Some of the challenges include transparency of decision making processes, judicial review, data storage and security, error rates, discriminatory impacts, scope and functional creep. He will canvas matters such as legislative barriers as well as outline the challenges his office faces in encouraging proportionate responses in face ofthe law and order political auction. 

Full presentation available here.

Biography: Appointed as the Queensland Privacy Commissioner in December 2015, Philip Green has an extensive career in the private and public sectors. Mr Green’s legal career at Allens included commercial banking and finance/insolvency.  He has extensive central agency experience in criminal justice, legal and economic policy at the Department of the Premier and Cabinet in Queensland.  He most recently headed up the Small Business division for the Queensland Government. He has a keen interest in innovation and technology law and was instrumental in establishing Queensland’s first administrative privacy regime. He holds degrees in Arts and Law from the University of Queensland and a Masters in Law from QUT. Philip’s current term of appointment is to December 2018.

Biometrics, Regulation and the Law

Abstract: The term 'RegTech' emerged in 2016 as a means of adding sex-appeal to the application of technology to compliance responsibilities, in particular those of corporations in the financial services sector. This presentation adopts a broader vision of technology applied to regulation, arguing that RegTech is needed in all sectors, and that it's essential to consider the perspectives not only of the regulatees, but also of the regulators, and of the intended beneficiaries of the regulatory activity.

The question addressed in the session is to what extent can biometrics play a role in RegTech. It's necessary to take a realistic view of the nature of biometric technologies, of the categories of application that they can be put to, and of the array of real-world challenges that confront those applications. There may be scope for biometric applications in RegTech, but far less than enthusiasts would like to believe.

Biography: Roger Clarke is an independent consultant in the strategic and policy implications of advanced information technologies, with a particular focus on eBusiness, information infrastructure, and dataveillance and privacy. He is a Visiting Professor in Computer Science at the ANU, and a Visiting Professor in Law at UNSW.  He has also held Visiting Professorships at the University of Hong Kong (2002-07), the University of Bern, and the University of Linz.  He holds Honours and Masters degrees in Commerce (IS) from UNSW, and a PhD from the ANU.  He was made a Fellow of the Australian Computer Society (FACS) in 1986, and of the international Association for Information Systems (FAIS) in 2012.  In 2009, he was awarded only the second Australian Privacy Medal, after Justice Michael Kirby. He has spent many years on the Board of the Australian Privacy Foundation (APF), including as Chair 2006-14, and on the Advisory Board of Privacy International (PI).  He has also served variously as a Director, Secretary and Chair of several companies, of Electronic Frontiers Australia (EFA), and of the Internet Society of Australia (ISOC-AU), including as Secretary 2012-15.

Full paper here