Advantages, disadvantages, and major concerns of Face Recognition based Attendance

A face recognition based attendance system is a technology to identify or verify an individual using their facial features. This system can be used to recognize people in images, videos, or in the real-time event. It uses computer algorithms to single out precise, distinctive characteristics of a person’s face, such as distance between both eyes, the shape of the jaw, etc. These characteristics are transformed into mathematical form, and then, they are matched with the data of the faces that are stored in the face recognition records. 

Some face recognition artificial intelligence-based attendance systems are intended to evaluate a probability score of how much an unknown person’s face characteristics match with particular face shapes that are stored in the database. These systems can provide several possible matches in the result, ranked based on the probability of them being the right match. 

Face recognition based attendance Artificial intelligence-based attendance system’s ability to detect the right face can differ based on the challenging surrounding conditions such as bad lighting, poor quality image, and more. 

Implementation

Employee Attendance

AI in Face recognition is used to take the attendance of the employees and to check when the employee left. Many believe that this face recognition system can be an effective substitute for the Biometric fingerprint.

Usually, a camera is placed at the entrance where it would recognize the employees as they come and go and record the time of their entry and exit in the database. By making some settings and user logs, you can find if your employees worked late, left on time, or left early. The system is also used in the restricted area where only a few individuals are given access. When the system finds their match in the database, they are provided the access.

Law Enforcement

Similarly, AI in Face recognition is also used in law enforcement. Criminals are searched in the database and concerned authorities are if a match is found.

Current Examples: 

  • King Cross, a district in north London, uses facial recognition to keep track of thousands of people.
  • About 3 police forces of the UK have been using the face recognition system on a trial basis since 2015. Also, some police departments in the USA are placing orders for acquiring face recognition systems.
  • Many airports and airlines around the world have implemented a Contactless biometric attendance system as an additional security measure. 

Advantages of Face recognition based attendance system

AI in Face recognition system provides its users with a simple, user-friendly, and easily manageable platform to maintain records of face templates. Here are a few advantages offered by this system that make things all the more convenient for the clients. 

  1. Automated system

Artificial intelligence-based attendance is an automated system, which makes it a lot easier to track employees’ time. There is no need to keep an eye on employees during all their hours on the premises. This technology can accurately and quickly deliver the information about the attendance, absence, and overtime of every employee. 

  1. Time and cost-saving 

This system can be beneficial in saving lots of time and money for companies. Since the face recognition system keeps automatic track of employees’ working hours and access to various areas on the premises, companies won’t have to employ an additional workforce to do this job. The automated system also helps in preventing human error and keeps track of accurate hours. 

  1. Better security

Contactless biometric attendance face recognition system not only allows you to keep track of your employees’ accurate working hours, but it also helps in improving and tightening existing security measures. Other than employees, you can also add the details of visitors that come to your premises from time to time. Any person who could not be found in the system will be denied access. A face recognition system can also provide evidence in case any untoward or illegal event happens and authorities come to investigate. 

  1. Touchless feature

The face recognition system does not need the person to touch any surface. For instance, in the current pandemic of COVID-19, it is important not to touch any surface which has not been sanitized before, as it might contain the virus and those who are touching it, might get infected by it. Using a Touchless biometric attendance face recognition system, employees won’t have to touch any surface and they can enter and exit the premises in significantly less time. It will minimize the spread of the virus and also save a lot of time for employees.     

  1. Easy to install 

It is easy to install facial recognition on artificial intelligence-based attendance systems. Companies can easily incorporate this software in your existing system and most of the applications can work seamlessly with it. The face recognition feature offers a hands-free procedure and also helps in maintaining hygiene and accuracy.

Disadvantages of Face recognition based attendance system

  1. Breach of privacy 

Using Face Recognition system enables the government authorities to sabotage the privacy rights of other people, especially in countries where privacy rights are not of great importance. Authorities can use the technology as they want and use it to spy on others. They can collect the data without people knowing about it and use it as they wish without the consent of the people involved.

Similarly, the police department can also use this technology to track criminals. But at the same time, they can use the same technology to track anyone at any place and at any time. They can detect the person from CCTV footage, smartphones, videos, social media posts, and other activities online. Indeed, it can be difficult to say if any data privacy can be maintained in the wake of the facial recognition system.

  1. Biased performance

There is the possibility that facial recognition systems might not be able to identify women or people of color. Although many think it is just a misconception, some reports have emerged complaining about the same thing happening. This might occur as the problem after the first implementations, where the dataset is not very large and contains information with limited characteristics. 

  1. No so reliable 

As per a study conducted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), facial recognition systems have done a lot of misidentifications. Some factors could lead the system in the wrong way, such as poor light, wrong camera angle, bad image or video quality, and more. 

Major concerns with Face recognition based attendance system 

  1. No proper federal regulations

Face recognition is seeing a dramatic rise in demand. The market for this technology is growing exponentially. Based on a research report, the facial recognition industry could grow up to $7.0 billion by 2024 in the USA, mainly for surveillance and marketing purposes. However, lack of proper federal regulations is one of the major concerns for the citizens. They are worried about their privacy rights, lack of complete accuracy, and biased or misinformed results.

  1. Misidentification

Many agencies and departments in law enforcement have begun to use a face recognition system to track criminals and perform other searches. However, since people are already concerned about the lack of complete accuracy in the results provided by this system, it can lead to misidentification. Authorities might convict the wrong person, which can be very damaging for that individual’s reputation in society and could have harmful repercussions in the long run. 

  1. Violation of UN Human Rights 

A human rights principle recognized by the UN is that surveillance should only be done when it is necessary and proportionate. It means that surveillance should only be done in case of serious crime rather than allowing others to interfere unwarrantedly in other liberty and fundamental rights. A Face recognition based attendance system allows the users to monitor others’ activity at any time and any place. As a result, people are right to mistrust this technology and the intentions of those who are using it under the disguise of a nation’s security. 

  1. Bad effect on citizens’ participation in public events

Citizens’ mistrust in this technology and the authorities’ intention behind using it can lead to a lack of active attendance and participation in public events such as political campaigns and protests. This can seriously put a hurdle on people’s right to freedom, expression, and association. 

  1. Can be used to target others, more vulnerable sections of the structure

Facial recognition technology can be put to good use for people’s security, monitoring, and tracking lawbreakers, recording employees’ attendance and working hours, and a lot more. On the other hand, it can also be used to target certain sections of society in an attempt to bring them down. For instance, the usage of facial recognition software by agencies such as the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has been under heavy criticism. The agency has been severely censured for how it deals with the migrants. 

Action Needed To Mitigate The Concerns 

No technology is completely fail-safe. Every one of them has its ups and downs and face recognition. Artificial intelligence-based attendance software is no exception. However, it is very important, especially in current global scenarios, how this technology is impacting people’s human and civil rights. AI and facial recognition technology are growing, which will only move upwards in the coming years with more advancement. But its advantages might last long. With time, lawbreakers might be able to find a way around it, and the list of privacy and security issues will keep on expanding. Unless, of course, experts find ways to ensure that this technology goes in the right hand, works in the right, and no one abuses it. 

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