Facial recognition
At Caliburger in Pasadena, California customers can cash out their order by smiling at a screen, at Hong Kong International Airport Chinese nationals can sail through immigration based on the contours of their face and closer to home, in Grimsby CCTV with advanced facial recognition technology is being trialled to reduce crime (not quite as glamorous as ordering a burger by flashing your pearly whites!). Google also recently announced its new smart doorbell, Hello, which will also use facial recognition to admit visitors based on whether it likes the look of them (as programmed by the home owner), or turn them away with an abrupt “denied access” message.

With big brands, restaurants, airports and even local government getting in on the facial recognition act it seems certain that the technology is going to be propelled up the adoption ladder and become mainstream very quickly. It won’t be long before we can wink at a camera for pretty much anything – starting our cars, unlocking our phones, paying for supermarket shopping, launching our online banking browser. You name it, if it needs a payment, password or security clearance it will be done through facial recognition eventually.

But what does this mean for our back end systems? It potentially means another seismic shift in what databases will need to process – not to mention a closer look at compliance. GDPR is currently fit for purpose but when it comes to having a library of customer biometric data on file data responsibility takes on a whole new meaning, particularly when it comes to data breaches. If you thought the BA hack had implications, imagine the headache if facial imagery was also involved.

But going back to the CDP (Customer Data Platform) what does it mean for this? What sets an effective Customer Data Platform (CDP) apart is its ability to be future proofed and adapt to the fast moving technological changes that are occurring.

The first question that is asked when buying new software is its ability to integrate into existing systems. The reverse is true for databases. The most important aspect to determine is its responsiveness to the macro-environment. Ultimately how easy is it to integrate emerging technologies? A flexible data solution in today’s rapidly changing market place is business critical, without it there is a very real threat of obsolescence. Darwin was right: adapt or die.

For further information about what facial recognition potentially means for you or advice on your database management solution please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

If you want to know and understand more about the way data is changing the world you live in, or would like to know how data can add value to your business, please email me at david.gurney@alchemetrics.co.uk


Dave Gurney

CEO, Alchemetrics - Expert in Data & Digital Marketing
enabling senior marketers to value from engaging customers online.