School of Engineering and Digital Arts

Biometric Technology showcased at Major Los Angeles Security Event

Published: 26/09/2005

The Department of Electronics showcased its expertise in biometric identification technologies at the major homeland security conference, US-UK Homeland Security Symposium, organised by UK Trade and Investment and the British Consulate-General, in Los Angeles recently.

The event, on September 8 and 9, looked at coordinating the developing of security technology between governments, industry and universities in the UK and US. Issues under consideration included risk and economic assessment of terrorist attacks; sensing systems and sensor networks and information security and, of course, biometrics.

The Department of Electronics is a world-leading research centre in biometric technology, researching and developing all aspects of biometrics – from building reliable systems for identifying people (from their facial features, iris patterns and voice, for example) to finding better ways of defending biometric systems from attack or fraud. Professor Mike Fairhurst, the leader of the research team and Head of Department, was one of 25 UK delegates and spoke at the Conference, which was attended by around 200 international representatives.

He said in a press release just before the Conference:

“Biometrics is one of the most important and vibrant areas in the security sector. We are looking at opening up opportunities for ourselves and other groups in the sector to exploit the opportunities that technological developments are increasingly making available.

“We look at all aspects of biometric processing – from establishing reliable and foolproof technology to analysing human behaviour when using a biometric system.

“This event is crucial in giving us a platform to discuss our work in biometrics with key US government agencies, industry figures and other universities, so that we can focus and coordinate our research effort.”

Duncan Fisken, homeland security sector specialist, UK Trade & Investment said:

“Since 9/11, Governments and the public have been extremely concerned about security breaches and attacks, so events like the Los Angeles symposium are crucial.

“The US Department of Homeland Security has called for increased international cooperation in combating terrorism and this gives US and UK high-tech firms, security services and governments a chance to work together. We need to share expertise to develop technology like biometrics, sensor technology, IT systems and emergency resilience.

“UK Trade & Investment and other UK government agencies and departments are working to foster the kind of academic and commercial collaboration is key quickly improving, strengthening security procedures, bolstering the economy, public safety and potentially saving lives.”

The event was hosted by the University of Southern California, home to the Centre for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events, which is the leading homeland security academic institution in the US. The Government research agency QinetiQ and BAE Systems Advanced Technology Centre were also present. US companies attending included the Boeing Corporation.

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Last Updated: 30/08/2017