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How Face Recognition Works? Is Face Recognition Safe to Use

How Face Recognition Works


Facial Recognition is becoming very popular nowadays. These days every smartphone comes with a facial recognition system and one of the most popular is Apple iPhone X. In iPhone X you didn`t have any fingerprint sensor, but Apple has high confidence in its Face recognition system aka Face ID. Now the question arises, how face recognition works?

Face Recognition is a way of identifying a human face through picture or video stream. A facial recognition system uses technology to recognize a face. Every face has different facial features, different shape, different peaks, and valleys. Nowadays, the face recognition system can precisely identify millions of faces in just a fraction of second. Let`s understand it.


How Face Recognition Works?

Face Recognition is a way of identifying a human face through picture or video stream. A facial recognition system uses technology to recognize a face. Every face has different facial features, different shape, different peaks, and valleys. These are known as nodal points and every face has approximately 80 nodal points.

We broke down the whole procedure of facial recognition into steps to help you understand better. So let's understand how face recognition works.


Step 1: Detection of Face

A picture of your face is acquired from an existing photo or video. 

Step 2: Alignment

After detecting a face, the facial recognition software reads the geometry of your face. The software determines distance b/w the eyes, the width of the nose, depth of eye sockets and the distance from forehead to jaw. The Software now converts these facial landmarks — that are key to distinguishing your face and converts them into a facial signature (unique code).

Step 3: Matching of face

If the picture is 3D and the database also contains 3D pictures, then matching will be done without any changes being made to the picture. When a 3D picture is taken, several points are identified. For example, the outer portion of the eye, the inner portion of the eye and the nose tip will be pulled out and measured. Once those measurements are done, the system converts a 3D picture into a 2D picture. The software compares the picture with the 2D pictures in the database to find a potential match.

Step 4: Verification


The Picture may match that of a picture in a facial recognition system database.

That`s how face recognition works, but where it is used?


Read more - Android’s basic facial recognition


Where Facial Recognition is used?

A lot of people and organizations use face recognition for safety, monitoring purpose. 

Airports-  Facial Recognition is used to keep an eye on the activity, movement of people coming in and going out of airports. This system helps to quickly identify any criminal face moving in a crowd. Custom departments of various countries have been able to arrest criminals using this facial recognition system.


Smartphones- Apple used facial recognition to unlock its iPhone X smartphone, and continues with the iPhone XS. Face ID very accurately tracks the geometry of your face and unlocks your device only if your face is matched with the image available in its database. Apple says the chance of a random face unlocking your smartphone is about one in 1 million.

Education Institutes- Face recognition software is used to monitor the activity of people, students, staff coming in and going out of institutes. This helps to maintain security and avoid any criminal incidents in the institute.

Social Media Companies- Have you ever noticed that whenever you or someone uploads an image of yours on Facebook, it notifies you that you`re in this image. This happens because Facebook uses facial recognition software to identify images. When you upload images on Facebook, it analyzes and saves them in its database. Facebook says that its software can recognize faces with 98 percent accuracy.

Military base- Military uses face recognition system to protect their bases from enemy attack.

Worship Places-  Temples, Churches, Majids, Gurudwaras use these type of systems to keep an eye on the people present at these places.





5 Benefits of Facial Recognition-

Face Recognition Technology is expected to rise from USD 3.85 billion in 2017 to an estimated USD 9.78 billion by 2023. There are some benefits of facial recognition technology which helps to maximize safety and security.

1. Increased Safety: 

One of the biggest benefits of facial recognition technology is that it adds extra layer security and to ensure safety. From government to personal use, the demand for advanced security and surveillance systems is increasing continuously. It is very helpful for finding any potential criminal in the crowd. Research shows that there is a chance of 1-in-50,000 with the fingerprint sensor being unlocked with the wrong fingerprint. With 3D facial modeling, the chance drops to nearly 1-in-1,000,00.

2. Increased Accuracy:

As the number of cyber attacks is increasing every day, having quick and accurate technology is key. Face recognition technology ensures verification that is quick, accurate, and convenient. Although it is still possible but very difficult to fool face recognition technology, which makes it beneficial in helping prevent cyber attacks. With 3D mapping and deep learning, it becomes more reliable and harder to trick.

3. No Contact:

Face recognition is preferred over a fingerprint scanner because of its non-contact and ease process.

4. Smarter Integration:

FRT tools are generally easy to integrate with existing security infrastructure and can help to save time, cost on software redevelopment.

5. Automation:

The major plus point of this technology is automation, accuracy and 24/7 security which helps to visually monitor entry points all the time.

Cons of Facial Recognition-

Everything has some pros and cons.

1. High Cost:

Face recognition requires high-end cameras and software to ensure speed and accuracy. However, Allied Market Research predicts that technological advancements will reduce the price of FRT system in the future.

2. Data Storage:

The videos and images required for face recognition require a significant amount of storage. Due to this, organizations have to use several computers to process everything and to do it quickly.

3. Change in appearance:

Any major changes in appearance will make face recognition system unuseful. You will not be able to unlock your device, with your facial biometrics.

Best facial recognition software in smartphones-

How Face Recognition Works

Most of the smartphones which offer face recognition use software-based technology to unlock a device. The software-based system is not safe and secure, you can fool this with an image of yours. Apple iPhone X, iPhone XS are some of the most secure smartphones. Both of these smartphones offer a proper dedicated hardware system for face recognition technology, Apple calls it Face ID.

Face ID is a 3D face scanning technology which uses IR (infra-red) technology, dot projector, and machine learning to provide you a real-time face scanning. On the top of the screen, there are various sensors which are used to capture every minute detail of your face.

There are primarily 3 main components flood illuminator, dot projector and IR camera which make Face ID highly secured. Apple says with Face ID the chance of getting fooled is 1 in 1,000,000.

First, flood illuminator puts IR light on your face so that it becomes visible to the camera and works in both day and night. In the second step, dot projector projects 30,000 points on your face. The IR camera captures the reflection of these dots and tries to create a pattern or 3D depth map of your entire face. The data is then sent to the system which stores its database and whenever you put your face in front of the selfie camera it identifies your face.

There is also one more thing that makes it more interesting, Apple says in iPhone X and iPhone XS, they have used machine learning which will help system to recognize your face even if your face has minute changes. Like if you wore glasses or shaved your beard, it will work.

In some models of Huawei, Oppo, and Xiaomi, they have used this same process.


Buy Apple iPhone X



Buy Huawei Nova 3i


That `s how face recognition works. We hope you loved this post.

Comment below if you have any question, we will try to answer them.


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