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New biometric identification tools used in theme parks

“Lots of people logging on their computers by fingerprint identification in Japan. Various security systems which use a part of one's body for identification have also emerged. For example, bank ATMs verify identity by holding one's finger or palm over a sensor.

This is technology which utilizes "biometrics," and its application is spreading. Recently, it can be seen used in theme parks as well. Interesting, isn't it?

Do you know that NEC is the top runner in the development of biometrics technology? Today, I'm going to visit NEC which has been involved in fingerprint identification for over 40 years and technical research with respect to facial recognition for more than 20 years.

Picture: Interviewee Ms. Rie Kokuryo

A specialist in biometrics at NEC who is part of a team that plans and sells products that use "biometrics"

  • MitaNice to meet you, Ms. Kokuryo. And thank you for your time today. When I hear the word "biometrics," I recall scenes on TV where the police are identifying fingerprints on a computer to identify a criminal. Could you tell me about biometrics?
  • KokuryoIt is the basis of today's talk so let me explain precisely what it is.
  • MitaPlease.
  • Kokuryo"Biometrics" is a method of authentication that uses physical features, traits, etc. to verify a person's identity. Typical examples of physical features would be fingerprints, palm prints, veins, irises, face, and voice.
  • MitaIs fingerprint identification on a computer one of these?
  • KokuryoYes, that's right. Fingerprints differ from person to person, and a person's identity can be judged by his or her fingerprints.
  • MitaI see. You mean that biometrics is a system of identifying whether or not a person is the actual person concerned by using physical features which only that person has.
  • KokuryoYes, exactly just as you described! Biometrics is often used in security-related applications such as access control on doors or log-on to a computer system.
  • MitaI see. I believed that biometrics was mostly for security applications, but recently I heard that it has become utilized in other applications, too.
  • KokuryoYes, entertainment facilities have started to use them as well. A prime example would be Universal Studios Japan®.
  • MitaWhat is it used for?
  • KokuryoAt Universal Studios Japan®, a type of biometric system which employs facial recognition is being used.
  • *NeoFace is a registered trademark of NEC Corporation in Japan.
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