Cagayan Valley cops roll out facial recognition system vs crime
This October 21, 2020 photo shows officials of the Cagayan Valley police at the launch of Project ARREST.
via The STAR/Artemio Dumlao
Cagayan Valley cops roll out facial recognition system vs crime
Artemio Dumlao (Philstar.com) - October 21, 2020 - 3:42pm

BAGUIO CITY, Philippines — Cagayan Valley police will be using facial recognition software against crime, possibly a first for the Philippine National Police.

"The technology utilizes a real-time facial recognition system through artificial intelligence to identify persons with Warrants of Arrest, High Value Targets and members of communist terror groups evading law enforcers. [This will be done through] facial recognition technology-enabled handy smart phones," Police Brig. Gen. Crizaldo Nieves, regional police director, said.

Project "A.R.R.E.S.T" (Artificial Intelligence Facial Recognition Through Responsive Electronic System) aims to develop a fast, reliable, and convenient system that can make work easier for the regional police in its campaign against wanted persons.

"It will increase police effectiveness in curbing criminality and increasing crime solution efficiency by effecting the arrest of wanted persons,"  the Cagayan Valley police director added.

According to Interpol, which also uses a facial recognition system, the technology is potentially "capable of identifying or verifying a person by comparing and analyzing patterns, shapes and proportions of their facial features and contours."

It ackonwledges, however, that the technology is still new and "standards and best practices are still in the process of being created."

It also said it is crucial that systems work with high quality images. It notes that in its own INTERPOL Face Recognition System, "[l]ow or medium quality images may be not searchable ... and, if they are, the accuracy of the search and the results themselves can be significantly affected."

In the Project "A.R.R.E.S.T" system, photographs of wanted individuals, HVTs involved in illegal drugs and known communist rebels will be uploaded into the system through the Regional Investigation and Detective Management Division for wanted persons and the Regional Intelligence Division for HVTs involved in illegal drugs as well as known members of the New People's Army.

The smartphones are equipped with an application connected to a secure system that enables the users of these phones to scan the face of a person utilizing the built-in cameras, regional police said.

These application-enabled smartphones will be used by police personnel at checkpoints and other police operations, Police Brig. Gen. Nieves said.

At its launch this week, 30 smart phones were issued to chiefs of police of selected police stations all over Cagayan Valley.

Eventually, all police stations will be equipped with these smartphones. "I will give appropriate awards to the first 10 police stations that will effect an arrest through this technology," Nieves said.

"We will continue to develop and improve our capability to rid Cagayan Valley of criminals," he also said.

CAGAYAN VALLEY FACIAL RECOGNITION
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