Use Hid® Iclass™ to Put a Face On Access Control

March 19, 2003
Las Vegas, Nevada, 26 March, 2003 – HID Corporation and Image Metrics today showed corporations how to use biometrics to improve access control security without breaking the budget. The demonstration marries the convenience and low-cost of the HID iCLASS contactless smart card with the assurance and confidence of a high-resolution facial image stored right on the card. The innovative Image Metrics FACE400 software reduces the image to 400 bytes and reconstructs the data to produce a photo-grade image on off-the-shelf computer monitors.
HID, the largest manufacturer of contactless access control readers and cards for the security industry, and Image Metrics demonstrated FACE400 on its iCLASS contactless smart cards at the International Security Conference in Las Vegas. “Along with convenience, customers now want two-factor authentication, a single credential, and fast throughput at their access control points,” states Jim St Pierre, HID Vice President, Product Management. “The iCLASS products and FACE400 software produce a high-resolution face without slowing the holder’s pace through the station. And the on-screen image is so true-to-life, guards can confirm quickly the holder’s identity.”
“The FACE400 image understanding technology lets you store a full facial image in just 400 bytes—no one else can do that,” states Dick Clark, Image Metrics Security Business Vice President. “Equally as important, FACE400 has a simple architecture and programming interface that is easy to integrate with any application. Security system developers don’t need special image processing or vision system experience to add the modules to their programs.”
The FACE400 run-time module creates the image data and reconstructs the high-resolution image on standard Microsoft® Windows™ platforms. The image data is stored directly on the iCLASS smart card, providing corporations with a portable database, readily scalable to large systems with unlimited populations and spanning multiple sites. Putting the image right on the card also eliminates the need for and cost of biometric template database management. The image input can be industry-standard JPEG or bitmap files produced by low-cost, off-the-shelf video cameras. The reconstructed image can be displayed on a wide variety of devices; for example, a laptop screen or computer monitor.
FACE400 uses computer vision technology invented by Image Metrics to capture and produce high-resolution images in such a small amount of data. This technology is based on image understanding rather than the compute-intensive, data-rich, and ad hoc image processing technologies that have yet to produce practical, commercial solutions. The image understanding approach differs, and produces such efficient results, because the computer starts with a model of the target object (in this case a face). Capture and reconstruction is a more efficient process of understanding the individual’s differences from the model. A white paper explaining the image understanding approach to computer vision is available at www.optasiasecurity.comThe FACE400 run-time is provided toolkit which also includes documentation, demo applications that show how to input and reconstruct images, and training that get developers started on the right track. The toolkit is available today for Windows-based computers and supports development using Microsoft Visual C++™ or Visual Basic™. Contact Image Metrics for the licensing terms and conditions.
About Image MetricsImage Metrics PLC was founded by a team of PhD computer vision scientists from the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom; their credentials include over 30 years of computer vision expertise, 70 publications, and numerous National and International awards. The Image Metrics image understanding products are based the Optasia™ model-based, computer vision platform. Optasia™ automates the extraction of information from images and video, replacing a whole class of image analysis and image processing technologies. Image Metrics' Optasia™ software modules deliver world-class image understanding solutions through dedicated business units for the security, media, and medical markets.About HID Corporation            As interest in IT secure authentication and other smart chip applications increases, HID's credential remains the platform of choice to carry multiple applications. HID multi-technology credentials can be used throughout organizations to leverage the investment in existing systems, while providing for enhanced functionality in other areas. As the largest manufacturer of contactless access control readers and cards for the security industry, HID has shipped over 150 million credentials to customers worldwide. HID pioneered the development of radio frequency identification (RFID) technology for security. Their experience in developing card technologies enables HID to play a critical role in the evolution and adoption of smart card technology. For more information on HID, visit their website at

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