Fido Alliance introduces Face Verification Certification for remote biometrics

The FIDO Alliance announced today the launch of the first globally available certification program to test and certify the performance of remote biometric identity verification technology when verifying a user against a trusted identity document for accuracy, liveness, and bias.

The Face Verification Certification program comes at a time of soaring demand for face biometric identity solutions and recognition of the importance of robust enrollment and identity re-binding processes to the overall security of online accounts. Dynamic Liveness, the science powering the iProov Biometric Solution Suite’s Remote Onboarding Solution and Authentication Solution, is the first product to pass the rigorous certification testing.

The certification program, consisting of 10,000 tests at a minimum, assesses a biometric system’s performance across different demographics, including skin tone, age, and gender. It measures resistance to spoof and deepfake attacks with Imposter Attack Presentation Accept Rate (IAPAR), and also assesses the usability and security of solutions by measuring False Reject and Accept Rates (FRR and FAR respectively). The certification also tests “selfie match” capabilities to ensure a user’s “selfie” matches their government-issued ID in the initial account setup process.

Combating bias and deepfake threats in biometric ID systems

Biometrics has ranked top as global consumers’ preferred way to log in and the method they think is most secure for the last two years. However, as governments and businesses globally roll out remote identity solutions, two urgent issues remain to address – bias in some biometric systems and new security threats.

Organizations including NIST have been closely monitoring the disparities in performance for some time – with NIST’s most recent evaluation of solutions across different demographics released this year. The issue of bias is tightly linked to brand reputation too; new research from FIDO Alliance released today has found 50% of American and British consumers said they would lose trust in an organization if its biometric system was found to be biased, while 22% said they’d stop using a service entirely. Similarly, generative AI’s boom has also heightened security apprehensions about online verification; the same survey revealed over a third of consumers (37%) are more concerned about verifying themselves online due to the rising number of deepfakes. In ENISA’s latest remote ID report, researchers observed that while deepfake injection attacks are increasing and more sophisticated, deepfake presentation and injection attacks remain the top two biometric attack types most difficult to mitigate.

Bringing trust to the ID ecosystem

Commenting on the news, Andrew Shikiar, Executive Director & CEO of the FIDO Alliance, said: “Remote identity solutions unlock huge benefits for governments, organizations, and consumers alike, but as appetite grows across the globe, there are understandable concerns mixed with excitement. Identity theft is rising, while bias in biometric systems has caused organizations to delay or reconsider implementations at a time when inclusivity and accessibility have never been more important;

“Certification unlocks the power of open standards and catalyzes ecosystem-wide innovation and opportunity. With iProov’s market-first certification for biometric face verification now completed, we look forward to serving additional providers who understand the value of independent, accredited lab testing. This new certification program provides a launchpad that enables all stakeholders to fast-track deployments that are robust enough for the modern threat landscape and work well for everyone, anywhere in the world.”

Leading biometrics solutions provider, iProov, has become the first vendor to complete the rigorous certification process. iProov provides market-leading biometric solutions that protect the world’s most security-conscious organizations from deepfakes and other types of identity fraud. Andrew Bud, founder and CEO at iProov said: “Biometrics are a powerful tool that organizations can utilize to facilitate secure, inclusive, and user-friendly interactions online. Each of these three fundamental components must be given equal consideration as organizations evaluate their options. With the FIDO Face Verification Certification program, organizations now have a trusted compass for navigating these decisions. We applaud The FIDO Alliance for addressing the importance of biometric identity verification to strengthen the full user identity lifecycle. Independent certification creates a much-needed quality benchmark for this evolving technology and further demonstrates our ability to provide trusted identity assurance in an age of AI threats and identity fraud.”

Testing requirements are built upon proven ISO standards and are developed by a diverse international authority of stakeholders, including industry, government, and independent subject matter experts. Participating vendors can benefit from identifying gaps in product performance and demonstrating clearly to the market their solutions can be trusted, which can reduce individual testing needs and boost adoption. Two independent labs are currently accredited to support this certification – Ingenium Biometrics and TÜV Informationstechnik (TÜV NORD GROUP) – with more expected to follow later this year.

The program expands upon the Alliance’s existing Biometric Component Certification and Document Authenticity (DocAuth) Certification programs and demonstrates FIDO’s ongoing commitment to meet marketplace demand and address evolving threats with third-party certifications. Combined, these programs provide unrivaled end-to-end assurance to implementing organizations, consumers and vendors and support the world’s migration to more secure digital verification systems and passwordless security.