Face in the crowd: the FSB is developing a surveillance system

 Photo source:i-russia.ru

Every year, human identification technology for physical and behavioral traits, ie biometrics, develop and become cheaper. And the government has to treat them with great interest

Among the projects of the Commission for Modernisation and Technological Development of Russia, Dmitry Medvedev created in 2009, which advanced the citizens had high hopes for the reform of the country, there is a project to improve the identification system of the individual. The project marks the intelligence services, its aim — the creation of national multi-biometric systems identify a person in real time. In practice, this means the technology with which the camera pulls your face in the stream, and by referring to the database, determine if you're not a criminal, or even establish your identity.

Who calls the shots

Ironically, it is the FSB, not the Interior Ministry, which for many years worked in its advanced system identification in the search for criminals.

In the Commission for Modernisation and Technological Development of Russia issues involved in the creation of biometric systems working group number 4 "Strategic computer technologies and software," under the direction of Andrei Fursenko. But as you can see from the minutes of the group, all the proposals on the subject come only from members of the FSB. For example, 8 October 2009, when the two discussed the project — the creation of the automatic detection and recognition of targets in real time on the video, and voice biometrics, the report advocated Research Institute deputy chief of the FSB Evgeny Maximov. Responsible for both projects was appointed director of the Federal Security Service and its Bortnikova.

Initially, the problem was identified as — the country needs its own system for automatic identification of a person "in texture and three-dimensional forms of the surface of the face", working in a dynamic mode.

In practice, the problem is widely understood: the FSB announced tenders for systems that calculate potential criminal on gait and facial expression, complexes that determine the level of stress a person using a thermal camera, and even ordered the development of software modules that can withstand spoofing-attack, that is, to distinguish the living the face of the mask or plaster cast.

According to the decree of the Government of the Russian Federation of January 11, 2011 № 13-p, to "provide surveillance, detection and automatic target detection and alarm conditions in real time on the video and the formation of a real-time database recognized targets" was allocated in 2011 — 151 million rubles, and in 2012 — 157 million of funds Recipient is listed FSB.

Customer acts on behalf of the intelligence services military unit 68240. Under the serial number hidden famous OTU, Operational and Technical Management, which is responsible for the wiretap. The project to improve the surveillance and detection in / h 68240 announced at least seven contests, the details of which the law on public procurement are in the public domain.

Evgeny Yakovlev — CTO "Byterg" to win in November 2010 contest FSB work on the study "ways to create сверхвысокопроизводительной reconfigured computing platform for image processing tasks and target identification." We are sitting in a two-story, very beautiful house on the Big Postal. Yakovlev, gray trim engineer in his fifties, has flatly refused to discuss the order received from the FSB:

— Yes, we do it. Soon finish. When done? Soon. No, I can not say exactly what purpose the system should recognize.

— Tell me at least, it is a person, animal, or object?

— I do not know. We do not deal with customers, doing everything in accordance with the terms of reference, and how it will be applied, we do not know.

— Do not communicate or do not want to talk about?

— Communicate, of course.

"Byterg" specializes in surveillance cameras, Yakovlev said that his company produces about 100,000 cells per year, and it has its own factory in Aleksandrov. Serious competitors are the two or three Russian companies, but most of the market while still controls the foreign producer. "Byterg" created by engineers in 1997, and they have a license to work with the state secret. There is also a research department, which carries out the order of the FSB.

Yakovlev enlivened only when it comes to camera capabilities. According to him, the analog camera can recognize up to five faces in a crowd, IP-camera — about twenty. Also, please note that for the identification of deviation should be no more than 10-15 degrees from the angle photos in the database. So use at rallies frame inspection — going through it, one can not avoid falling into the focus of the camera. The same tactic can be used in the subway, and, according to Yakovlev, had the idea to set the camera directly to the turnstiles.

As it turned out, the system is not the first month of experience in the capital's subway.

See you at the "Hunter's Row"

In the lobby of the metro station "Ryad" installed "smart" camera, the picture that comes with the Situation Centre in the Underground, the Interior Ministry, the Federal Security Service and the Ministry of Emergency Situations. These cameras are associated with the hardware-software complex "Owl-stream", which provides biometric identification of each individual camera-captured by investigative databases MIA.

According to Alexander Abashin, CEO of "Ladak-service", which developed the system, its capabilities are such that search a database of 10 million images in less than seven seconds. However, these features are not used entirely in Russian, but the situation he is determined to change.

Alexander Abashin, a tall, well-built veteran of the GRU, most of his life served an officer of the Navy, but the last ten years devoted to the installation of biometric identification in airports, train stations and stadiums. During this time he became a real fan of identification.

Abashina office is located in an old mansion in the middle of the royal estate "Izmailovo" in Moscow on the only island which can be reached by moving river Serebrianka. From the windows you can see the towers and cathedrals, surrounded by century-old oaks and lindens. In this soothing atmosphere of about two dozen programmers daily busy perfecting identification technologies.

"Roughly speaking, the person in the picture is measured by 30 indicators, and compiled a mathematical algorithm, which is very difficult to cheat. The difference of our information retrieval system "Owl" is that it was originally developed as a basis for police and we do not take the reference image and the sketch ", — Explains Alexander Abashin. For several years, "Sova-Stream Video" is used by the Interior Ministry.

Abashin gladly talks about the system installed at the station "Ryad": "The first thing we realized there — determination of people who are wanted or representing an operational interest in online and store video images for subsequent processing. The system consists of four video cameras with biometric identification capabilities that are installed in the north lobby of the station, and online send a signal to the 1st Police Department and the Situation Centre in the Underground ".

In ge
neral, the station has about 60 cells. Abashin explains that passengers get to the cameras Axis, tuned to biometrics, at the entrance to the escalator. Video traffic is going to several agencies, including the Federal Security Service:

— How long this data is stored?

— We insist that they be stored at least 30 days, this is enough to solve the crime. The system first sends a signal to the operator's monitor, and then have to apply the algorithm of actions by the police.

— And what percentage of the people included in the station enters the review system?

— Not more than 20%.

However, distressed Abashin, the project on "Hunter's Row" has not yet developed:

— We are ready to continue, but there is no interest. In addition, many metro stations, especially in the center, are the monuments of architecture and can not violate their appearance, for example, set the camera to the turnstiles — the perfect place for that.

However, the identification system is not necessarily to be stationary mounted on the century. We Abashina in the office is a black briefcase, which houses the laptop and scanner. Next to it is a camera on a tripod.

— Here is the system, you see, three in one. It is a mobile set which is installed on the important frontier controls. For example, the border crossing points at the football games, railway stations, airports, subway, etc. When uploading new databases on people in a particular investigation, we are up to 96% can determine when and where the person was. The system immediately sounds an alarm that goes to the console, the PSC, the police station, where the monitor.

— How much does it cost and how complex is?

— The cost of this suitcase, "three in one" (meaning a system that works with photos, videos, and checking the authenticity of documents — approx. Authors) — about two million. Our systems work for more than three years, there used computer "Panasonic", protected, which can be on the ground to beat.

Operation of the mobile complex "Owl-Stream Video" tested on one of the authors, Irina Borogan. Technical Director "Ladak-Service" Alexander Kuljash set up the lighting and led Irina network camera with the lens mounted on a tripod. Then Kuljash scan the passport photo of Irene. For the purity of the experiment, we decided to drive to the system and even a photo of the passport Borogan younger sister, with whom she was constantly confused.

On the monitor, there was Irina's face in the frame and pupils with a burning green: it earned algorithm biometrics — the system measured the distance between them (one of the key parameters). After a few moments, image taken from the camera, it was "verified" with Borogan photograph in the passport.

But my sister came out of the problem.

"The system verifies you are not with your sister, — Says Kulash — hence, it distinguishes you. Although, however, are very similar. Among the most similar to the photos you took for men. But do not worry, the system is now set up so that it should give the result in any case, even if people like a birthmark. If on the basis of this algorithm is an access control system, it is placed there the similarity coefficient of 95%, and after the New Year holidays, the person has walked, the system does not recognize and do not miss it. And here the settings exhibited 15% similarity ".

In the end, the system has found a picture sisters, but put him in fifth place on the degree of similarity. As explained by Alexander Kulash, under the rules of the operator who receives the signal, the monitor should be viewed in the top 10 images, and then it all depends on his actions.

FSB sees you

While the use of fixed biometric systems in public places in Moscow — a rarity, but the FSB is going to soon change this situation.

Intelligence Agency today charged with developing the city video surveillance system, then there is a network of thousands of cameras installed in the big cities in the streets and squares, airports and train stations, as well as public transport. And last year, the Federal Security Service commissioned a study on this subject: "Identify ways to improve the system of regional and city surveillance." Term — from November 2010 to November 2011, the cost of 15 million rubles.

In fact, the installation of video surveillance do not yet have a sphere of activity of the FSB, since the mid-2000s the network cameras have been deployed in many Russian cities under the "Safe City". Mounted commissioned by the city authorities, they are composed of analog cameras that are suitable to monitor the situation as a whole, but are not suitable for qualitative identification.

FSB has set new tasks now the emphasis is on the identification of human and formation of databases of high-quality video images citizens. The new systems of urban surveillance are encouraged to use digital camera with the capabilities of "intelligent video" that is, with the ability to analyze the acquired images and compares it to the pictures in the database.

From the tactical and technical specifications clearly that the network cameras in cities must keep monitoring the situation in residential areas and transportation hubs, monitor what is happening on the roads, automatically capture an accident. As a special task assigned "control the situation in public places, including in places of concerts and entertainment events, with the transfer of information into operational service. "

Here are encouraged to actively use video analytics and develop a methodology for the search of persons on the basis of information in the database, that is, to use the long-established in the West and the technology we have face-recognition, recognition of facial. (They are, for example, uses Facebook, when you sign for, who is depicted in the photos with your party). FSB even invited developers to create a "mnemonic scripting language", which is to describe the behavior of a potential intruder (this is also video analytics) and a signal applied to the system operator.

And, of course, as the FSB calls the tune, then to doubt that the traffic from fixed video surveillance systems will go to the server and the security services, it will have access to the system is not necessary.

Apparently, the order will be completed on time. According to the Federal State Institution "Research Center under the Government of the Russian Federation", which was monitoring the projects of the Presidential Commission on modernization, from November 2010 to April 2011 the FSB for video surveillance projects were implemented successfully.

Source: Business work

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