The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks sent Dr. Nicole Spaun on a new career path.
“The hijackers went through airports. They had surveillance and they couldn’t match up the faces because the automated systems didn’t exist at the time, and they didn’t have enough trained people to look at all the imagery,” Spaun says. At that time Spaun had a background focused on examining the geology of other planets. “That’s when I contacted a colleague I knew at the FBI and said, ‘Are you guys hiring?'”
Facial recognition is being used extensively now for identification and verification. As the Principal Face Biometric Expert for Morphotrak, Spaun designs training programs in face comparison. She talked with Regarding ID’s Gina Jordan about the need for companies to make sure they’re as invested in training humans in facial recognition as they are in paying for expensive automated systems.