By Fred Gunn <email@example.com>
November 9, 2005
My wife recently got a new credit card and asked me
to go get a cash advance from the ATM so we could buy some crystals and
other assorted orgonite ingredients from a source that only takes cash.
Dutifully, I drove down to our bank, inserted the card, looked into the
camera and smiled.
It asked me for the PIN number, which I entered. Then
it asked me what I wanted to do? I pushed the button for cash advance. It
then asked me for how much? I pressed the amount she had requested. Then
it told me that it was experiencing technical difficulties, to try later.
Today she tried to use the credit card to purchase
some items and the clerk tried twice but the charges were declined both
times. He then called the number on the back of the card and the person
(?) on the other line asked to speak with my wife. She got on the phone
and after a few minutes she explained that it was indeed me, her husband,
who had tried to take a cash advance from the ATM last night, and that she
had authorized this. They told her that they declined the cash advance because
it wasn't her making the transaction and had put a hold on her credit card
account for her protection. After straightening things out, they released
the hold on her card and she was able to complete her purchase today.
I started thinking then, hmmm....I know those cameras
should only record transactions onto a tape and there are millions of customers
so it's impossible to have live persons monitoring every ATM transaction
worldwide, 24 hours a day. So how else would they immediately know to put
up the "We're having technical difficulties" prompt on the screen?
I put in the correct PIN number. I didn't request an unauthorized amount
of cash advance. What's going on? And then I got it. There must be facial
recognition software in the ATM systems.
It didn't recognize my face, and even though I input
the correct PIN number, it rejected my transaction. Now hold on. My wife
never submitted to any biometric photograph when she filled out the credit
card application!!! Where did they get a biometric photograph of her for
inclusion into her credit card account? They must have one, but she never
authorized that. This is bizzare, to say the least. But not unexpected,
If anyone else has any other suggestions as to how
they would know immediately who was requesting the ATM cash advance transaction
via video camera feed without a 24 hour live person monitoring every transaction,
please let me know.
I did a quick search on the internet and came up with
this statement on potential uses for facial recognition software:
"Potential applications even include ATM and check-cashing
security. The software is able to quickly verify a customer's face. After
the user consents, the ATM or check-cashing kiosk captures a digital
photo of the customer. The FaceIt software then generates a faceprint of
the photograph to protect customers against identity theft and fraudulent
transactions. By using facial recognition software, there's no need for
a picture ID, bank card or personal identification number (PIN) to verify
a customer's identity."
Note the red highlighted part of the paragraph above..."After
the user consents..." Hey, there was no consent given by my wife to
this security measure.
And another statement here:
"At least that's the theory behind InnoVentry,
a San Francisco-based firm that operates self-service check cashing machines
in supermarkets, convenience stores and Las Vegas casinos. InnoVentry never
asks you to keep track of an automatic teller machine card or remember a
PIN. As you approach the ATM, it scans your face and matches it with a file
photo. The company has compiled a database of 330,000 customer faces over
the last two and a half years."
Again, my wife has never submitted to a biometric scan
of her face.
So why are they doing this already without people's
consent? I'll tell you why...
Fred _________________ "The basic difference between an ordinary man
and a warrior is that a warrior takes everything as a challenge, while an
ordinary man takes everything as a blessing or as a curse." ~ Don Juan
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the opinion of the author and is provided for educational purposes only.
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