Sumitomo Financial Group is testing facial recognition technology from NEC on purchases made by employees at its banking and cards operations.
A six-week trial at Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) will involve 1000 employees using the system to pay for meals at the head office cafetaria. The Sumitomo Mitsui Card trial will run for 10 weeks with 400 staffers plucked from the company's Tokyo head office.
The bank will be testing NEC's NeoFace recognition engine, which matches pre-registered images against an on-the-spot mugshot captured at the POS. Payment for items purchased is automatically deducted from employees' monthly salaries for the following month.
Facial profiles are stored as a series of numerical values to protect user privacy in the event of cyber-intrusions.
"Along with these trials, NEC is improving the functionality, reliability and convenience of identity verification in a variety of areas," says Fumiaki Matsubara, senior vice president, NEC Corporation. "We successfully concluded payment service trials using facial recognition at small shops inside our own head office, and aim to see the commercialisation of these services contribute to greater safety and security in communities throughout the world."