A facial recognition service has been launched that enables governments and businesses to get real-time data on people’s online habits, preferences and social presence.

Entitled VR Office Place, the product is being touted for a range of applications, including identifying security risks, preventing accidents and providing additional information to sales people to improve the chances of making a deal.

According to its creators, London, UK-based ETalc Technologies, the facial recognition service identifies people from video feeds, such as CCTV, and then provides analytics of the individuals identified.

Using information that is publicly available online, this analytics can include name, occupation and interests, with granular details such as favourite movies being suggested by the company.

Each organisation using VR Office Place is able to tailor the results to their needs, enabling it to be used by both businesses and government departments, with use cases such as border security and car sales suggested by the company.

VR Office Place claims “the possibilities are endless” when it comes to how the facial recognition service can be used.

“Live facial recognition emerged with social fingerprints can offer a competing edge and a distinct business advantages to organizations and governments,” said Stefan Ćertić, founder of VR Office Place.

“VR Office is welcomes inquiries for deploying this cutting-edge technology. What makes a huge difference is a real time analysis of public data, not just querying the database with definite number of records.”

Facial recognition service raises privacy concerns

As the potential of facial recognition technology grows, its adoption has increased significantly, raising considerable concerns about privacy.

In the UK the use of the technology has raised growing concerns, with a number of high-profile cases attracting interest and dismay.

A recent revelation that developer Argent was using real-time facial recognition across the 67 acre site surround Kings Cross railway station in London prompted an investigation by the Information Commissioner’s Office.

Meanwhile, an unprecedented legal challenge against the use of facial recognition technology by police ultimately saw the court back the use of the technology on crowds, in what may prove to be a precedent for its future use.

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This facial recognition service by VR Office Place is likely to raise increasing privacy concerns about the technology for its ability to connect a person’s identity to their online footprint, something that has seen growing concerns in other settings in recent years.


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