Taxi Firm Introduces Facial Recognition

A ride-hailing service called Careem (similar to Uber but operating in more than fifty cities in the Middle East and North Africa) is adding facial recognition software to its driver app to help with customer safety.

Is The Actual Driver The Authorized Driver?

The software, produced by ‘Digital Barriers’ will be added to the driver’s Careem smartphone app so that the actual driver of the vehicle can be matched in real-time to the authorised and accredited driver. This is intended to provide re-assurance to (and protect the safety and security of) Careem’s passengers by demonstrating to them that their driver’s credentials are being monitored (in an impressive way).

Helps With Driver Enrolment Too

The introduction of the facial recognition software to the app is also intended to help with Careem’s driver enrolment process.

First Mainstream Commercial Integration

Digital Barriers have stated that the software’s use with the Careem app is their first integration of their facial recognition software into a mainstream commercial application, on a recurring revenue basis.

Uber Also Introducing Facial Recognition

It was reported last month that Uber also plans to introduce facial recognition-based real-time ID checking for its India app, in 5 cities first (including Mumbai and New Delhi), with more to follow. Reports indicate that Uber’s facial recognition software will require drivers to take a selfie before they access the app, or accept a ride. If this doesn’t match-up with Uber’s records, the driver will be suspended while the matter is investigated. This will provide protection to customers as well as protecting drivers and their accounts from fraudsters.

Driverless Pods

As well as being an early adopter of facial recognition software as part of normal business operations, Careem is also reported to be about to team up with NEXT Future Transportation to bring battery-powered, self-driving electric pods to the Middle East and North Africa.

What Does This Mean For Your Business?

This is another example of how the advances in, the lowering costs of, and the superior security benefits (e.g. over passwords) of biometrics mean that biometrics-based services / products are being adopted by more businesses. Other examples of how biometrics are being used by businesses include Samsung’s introduction of an iris scanner to its Note 7 phablet and Barclays Bank’s voice authentication for telephone banking customers.

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