14 Mar, 2018

Security Heightens In Madison Square Garden With Facial Recognition


A new report has been released indicating that the famous arena Madison Square Garden, in New York City, has gone to new lengths to ensure the security of the space. These new lengths include using facial recognition to scan spectator’s faces during events that take place in the stadium, without anyone’s consent.

This report has been released by The New York Times and is drawing a major controversy among those who have participated in the variety of events that MSG hosts. These events include anything from concerts to sporting events among a variety of different sports, including basketball, hockey, and boxing, holding up to 20,000 guests.

Facial Recognition Security

Using facial recognition for security is really nothing new. In fact, it is the next cutting edge tool that can help push security forward among a variety of different areas, like airports, stadiums and even schools. The problem is, facial recognition is very easy to execute without anyone actually being aware they are getting screened, which causes a major concern among individuals.

Gizmodo reported on this issue:

“In 2016, researchers at the Georgetown Law Center on Privacy and Technology found that the Federal Bureau of Investigation had built a massive face recognition database, amassed from drivers’ licenses, passports, and mugshots. Sixty-four million Americans are in the database, with the overwhelming majority unaware they were involved at all.” Gizmodo reports.

This scenario is not rare, in fact, it is quite common. The FBI uses face recognition searches more commonly than wiretaps. But that is not all. Law enforcement runs and requests searches for driver’s license and ID photos as well.

“At least 26 states (and potentially as many as 30) allow law enforcement to run or request searches against their databases of driver’s license and ID photos. Roughly one in two American adults has their photos searched this way.” perpetuallineup reports.

Facial recognition is made possible through the up to date biometric technology that is made so readily available to us today. Just think about it how common it is to use your camera and take a photo of your face. The “selfie” generation is most certainly a valid concept in this case and is becoming more and more popular as technology continues to expand.

Now, you can even use facial recognition beyond just taking selfies. You can now unlock your mobile phone, or make payment transactions through this visual tool. Our faces now hold the key to a variety of different capablities, and major arenas like MSG, in this case, are taking advantage of this technology.

Security Concerns

When the report that MSG was using facial recognition for security purposes, a lot of eyebrows were raised. The most important security concern comes from the fact that patrons were not actually made aware that this was happening. This means that customers were not given the chance to properly allow for their faces to be scanned.

MSG did not deny or accept these claims. Rather, they stated that they are constantly advancing technologies and engaging in new forms of security in order to protect those who attend MSG. Gizmodo revealed this statement through an exclusive quote.

“MSG continues to test and explore the use of new technologies to ensure we’re employing the most effective security procedures to provide a safe and wonderful experience for our guests.”  Gizmodo reports.

These measures don’t just include security, though. Rather, MSG states that facial recognition can also be profitable when it comes to fans signing up for unique things like loyalty programs, or even purchase merchandise without having to provide their credit card since it will be connected to an account.

All in all, it is no secret that facial recognition is not just the future, but it is the present.


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