Homeland Security requesting facial recognition

The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) wants to develop technology that scans the faces of travelers as they enter and leave the U.S. without passengers getting out of their car. In addition, the capability must be able to account for environmental elements such as lighting, windshield tint, vehicle speed and infrastructure. The scanning technology must also account for traffic and occupant behavioral factors such as sun glasses, hats, driver looking away or an obstruction of facial view. Finally, the system must account for diversity in passenger demographics and socioeconomics – access to and use of mobile electronic devices.


DHS has posted a public notice calling on technology companies to submit proposals for the system by January 2018. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is interested in both standalone and multi-configuration integrated system approaches. All proposals should detail the requisite camera parameters and infrastructure requirements, and characterize the impact of technical and operational challenges. The agency is hosting an industry day in Silicon Valley on Nov. 14 to give businesses more information. The directorate anticipates making awards for $50,000 to $200,000 for up to four phases, ranging from proof of concept, prototype, a complex test and a full-fledged pilot.