This Iris Scanner Identifies You From 40 Feet Away – New Age Of Extremely Targeted Advertising To Begin?

A new iris scanner that can identify out from the crowd 40 feet has been developed.

Researchers in the United States have successfully developed an iris or retina scanner that can work at a distance of 12 meters (40 feet). While the technology may be deployed to hunt for known terrorists in large crowds, it could also be deployed atop a billboard that can recognize you from across the street and serve up hyper-relevant advertisements.

Iris scanners, more commonly referred to as eye-scanners aren’t a new thing. Multiple variants can be commonly seen in consumer electronics. However, this innovation propels the technology quite a few steps ahead. What’s admirable about the iris scanner is that it could positively spot and identify a driver that is sitting behind a wheel of a car. Moreover, the technology is fast enough to identify the driver when he is traveling through a toll bridge or exceeding the speed limit.

The team from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) has developed the scanning system that allows security cameras deployed across buildings to be smart enough to ID a person and not just capture an image. While this may sound futuristic and a desired step ahead in security, privacy advocates are quite worried about the significant escalation in the capabilities of law enforcement agencies across the world.

Led by CMU engineering professor Marios Savvides, the long-range iris scanner is highly accurate since our irises are as distinctive as our fingerprints. However, as with any biometric security, that’s the limitation of the scanner – the irises or their ‘imprint’ needs to be already in the database for the scanner to positively identify the person. Savvides adds that the technology isn’t as scary as it is made out to be,

“Fingerprints, they require you to touch something. Iris, we can capture it at a distance, so we’re making the whole user experience much less intrusive, much more comfortable. There’s no X-marks-the-spot. There’s no place you have to stand. Anywhere between six and 12 meters, it will find you, it will zoom in and capture both irises and full face.”

We live in a world where surveillance is omnipresent. A person is identified on multiple occasions as he journeys through any modern city. The iris scanner has merely gained range and may prove useful as well to speed up the serpentine queues at the airport, where identification is top priority.

[Image Credit | Getty Images]

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