#Power of Businesses l 2020-07-20
Today, we’re going to introduce Creative Value Technology or CVT, a provider of innovative facial recognition technology. Let’s hear from company CEO Lee Woo-gyun.
Mostly consisting of engineers, CVT is a technology startup dedicated to research and development. Founded in 2015, the company developed a next-generation facial recognition system with KT Telecop, the security arm under the leading telecom service provider KT. It later developed a similar system for Samsung Group through original development manufacturing.
I’m an engineer with 25 years of experience. I completed a master’s degree in electrical engineering at Hanyang University. I developed security systems at Samsung S1 for seven years and I was in charge of chip development for another seven years. One day, while working at image sensor maker Pixelplus, I returned home after a company dinner and I couldn’t remember the password to my own apartment. It was an embarrassing experience. As a specialist in cameras and image recognition chips, I found myself hoping to develop a facial recognition system that could be used at checkpoints like apartment entrances to provide more convenience to people. That’s why I decided to set up my own company.
Lee is a veteran engineer himself. He developed security systems at Samsung S1. Later, he developed image processing CPUs as well as other equipment at many security companies. After his upsetting experience of forgetting the password for his apartment entrance, he thought about facial recognition security systems. In fact, facial recognition technology can be applied to a wide range of areas.
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to the growing demand for non-face-to-face services. Contactless face recognition can provide more hygienic and convenient solutions. It can be applied to entrances of apartment complexes and office buildings. Combined with a thermal imaging camera, a face recognition system can also measure people’s temperatures simultaneously. So, it can identify those with high fever and help prevent COVID-19 from spreading further.
Currently, a weight sensor below the front seats of a car detects the weight of someone and activates an alarm when the seat belt is unbuckled. Similarly, a facial recognition system can be installed in vehicles. It may identify whether the driver is a teenager without a driver’s license. When car-sharing services and the use of smart cars become common, insurance and other problems may arise. The facial recognition system may only allow those with permission to drive and also recommend particular routes or music favored by the driver.
A facial recognition system uses biometrics to map facial features from photos or videos. It compares the information stored in a database to find a match and verify one’s identity. Compared to other biometric authentication systems using iris, vein or fingerprint, the facial recognition system is faster and more convenient as it does not require body contact. Thanks to these benefits, the global facial recognition market is expected to grow to 9 billion US dollars in 2022.
Lee paid attention to this new blue ocean market. Using his extensive experience, he developed technology unique to his company.
Even in extreme conditions like earthquakes, fires, power outages or network failures, our facial recognition system is still in operation. It ensures non-stop, fast recognition because it doesn’t need to transmit images.
Fake authentication of photos or videos is a serious problem, as we know. But our system uses an infrared camera, which is used to detect the area of the blood vessels. That means it is impossible to fabricate authentication. For face recognition, people may simply pass through without stopping, as the camera recognizes their faces in just zero-point-two seconds in this “walk-through” system. The infrared camera can also identify faces even in complete darkness.
Fast recognition is CVT’s biggest strength. Face identification, in general, takes one-second, or half that amount at the quickest. But CVT’s solution takes only point-two seconds, thanks to its standalone embedded system, which processes everything within the device itself. Conventional facial recognition methods proceed at a slow pace because it takes time to transmit images. CVT’s system, on the other hand, is designed for real-time authentication. The system using both infrared optical technology and deep learning can also work in darkness and identify the faces of people walking by.
CVT’s technology to guarantee safe, fast and accurate identification has drawn attention from large companies in South Korea. It participated in the International Security Conference & Exposition West, which is the world’s biggest security expo, in Las Vegas last year to ink a contract with Japanese electronics giant Panasonic.
We met Panasonic at last year’s ISC West in Las Vegas. The global firm finally selected us after looking for a partner for about five months. We worked together for about a year for the successful development of facial recognition solutions and we signed an official business contract early this year. We’re ready to conduct promotional activities and launch our system in ten Southeast Asian countries, though the process is rather slow due to the global COVID-19 outbreak.
Panasonic has worked on research and development of facial recognition technology since the early 1990s. The company has incorporated its technology into consumer products and applied it to camera-based security solutions. It chose CVT as its business partner to develop relevant technology even further, indicating that the pioneer in the facial recognition sector has fully acknowledged the South Korean firm’s outstanding technology. Encouraged by the positive development, CVT will spur its efforts to explore the Southeast Asian market.
It is also working to make its technology more accessible. It is developing new technology of identifying multiple faces all at once and it will apply the new security platform to hotels and apartment complexes to be built by Hoban Construction.
We’ve developed products for the business sector up to this point. But this year, we plan on launching a system that can be used in residential areas. For example, facial recognition systems installed at apartment entrances will allow residents to cope with the COVID-19 situation in a more hygienic and convenient way. We aim to expand the application of our facial recognition technology to apartment complexes and multi-purpose buildings with residential and commercial units. Our ultimate goal is to develop a facial recognition chip to be installed in smartphones and smart vehicles. By using our technology more broadly, we hope to serve the interests of people the world over.
Many people may have watched “Minority Report,” a 2002 American sci-fi action film starring Tom Cruise. In the movie that shows the future, high-tech society of 2054, identification cards do not appear. Rather, facial recognition is used to verify one’s identity. CVT is turning people’s imagination into reality. Thanks to this company, many more people will likely benefit from facial recognition technology.