ai-border-agents

New AI Border Agents Will Ask Travelers Questions & Will ‘Know’ If You’re Lying

Mizuki Hisaka - Author
By

Nov. 1 2018, Updated 2:51 a.m. ET

We’ve all seen the new technological developments being implemented at airports, including facial recognition programs that can detect when someone is trying to falsify their identity. Now, a new advancement means that some border checkpoints will employ AI technology. The project, dubbed iBorderCtrl, is currently in its pilot phases. It’s being tested by the Hungarian National Police in four different locations, detailed Gizmodo.

The problem lies in the accuracy rate of the AI system, which is still yet to be established. A previous iteration of a system was about 76-percent accurate, although the new iBorderCtrl team is hoping to reach at least an 85-percent accuracy.

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And for someone who happens to roll up on the new AI system, their facial micro-gestures will be analyzed in a sort of “lie detector test.” TechSpot detailed the information from their website.

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“The IBORDERCTRL system has been set up so that travelers will use an online application to upload pictures of their passport, visa and proof of funds, then use a webcam to answer questions from a computer-animated border guard, personalised to the traveler’s gender, ethnicity and language.”

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A virtual border agent will ask travelers questions like, “What’s in your suitcase?” and follow-up questions like “If you open the suitcase and show me what is inside, will it confirm that your answers were true?”

Each person’s ethnicity, language, and gender are taken into consideration when the analysis is done. If you pass, you get a QR code that allows you to cross the border. If you don’t pass, you might have to answer more questions posed by the virtual agent and get passed along to a human one.

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For now, “this pilot program won’t, in its current state, prevent anyone’s ability to cross the border.” Additionally, if you don’t pass the initial screening, you’ll be sorted into a “low-risk” or “high-risk” traveler, each which will prompt different levels of investigation by the human workers.

The trial period isn’t just about testing the system, either. It’ll be a period of time during which the AI will be gathering data. Gizmodo wonders if the facial recognition technology is still too “flawed” and “deeply biased” to provide accurate information.

As technology advances and becomes more utilized by governments, some question whether it is an invasion of privacy. Others find the new developments to be a positive thing to help curb crime.

We’ll have to wait and see how the pilot period goes, and whether the AI border agents will be deployed in more locations.

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