In the year 2020, Tokyo will essentially be breaking a tech record when they become the very first Olympics to use facial recognition technology in an attempt to improve security.
On Tuesday, the organizing committee announced that Tokyo will be utilizing the tech for indentifying officials, athletes, media, and staff at the 2020 Paralympics and Olympics Games. It will, however, not be utilized in the identification of any spectators who attend the events.
The utilization of the facial recognition technology is an effort to both increase security and hasten the entrance of authorized individuals. The Japanese IT conglomerate, NEC Corp, is currently developing the system. The company will be collecting digital images of all authorized individuals in advance, and then storing them within a database so that cross-checking can be conducted at all entry points.
The executive director of security for the Tokyo 2020 Games, Tsuyoshi Iwashita had this to say in the announcement on their blog post:
“This latest technology will enable strict identification of accredited people compared with relying solely on the eyes of security staff, and also enables swift entry to venues which will be necessary in the intense heat of summer. I hope this will ensure a safe and secure Olympic and Paralympic Games and help athletes perform at their best.”
New technology is often embraced by Olympic games. PyeongChang’s Winter Olympics in Korea used fuel-cell-powered Nexo SUVs for shuttling Olympic attendees around PyeongChang and Gangneung. Also, automatically inflated air bags were used by skiers as crash protection.
Comment requests from NEC corps. and the Tokyo Organizing Committee were not immediately responded to.
Could this be the first real step towards facial recognition being used as standard at large events? Let us know what you think about this article in the comments section below.