IriTech highlights how Biometrics can combat child trafficking in Africa

29 July, 2016

Fairfax-based biometrics firm IriTech is set to sponsor a Kids Personal Safety Event organized by Safe Kidz in Kenya which aims to also highlight how iris recognition can help authorities combat child trafficking. 

The event will take place on the 27  August at Impala grounds Nairobi where Data Vault Systems, IriTech’s Kenya partner, will launch a child trace app to help police, law courts and children’s homes to quickly and positively identify rescued children and reunite them with loved ones.

In a statement, the firm said that “This is indeed a first of its kind in the world and Iritech is proud to support child safety, security and wellbeing.  Besides that, the event is also aimed to educate school-age children & guardians on safety lessons in regards to abduction, kidnapping and abuse so that they can learn how to avoid becoming victims”.

According to the Global Report on Trafficking in Persons 2014 by United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the percentage of children among victims is increasing and children now comprise nearly one third of all detected trafficking victims in the world in which Africa & Middle East have the highest percentage of children trafficking cases equivalent to 62 per cent.

The firm noted that Safe Kidz and IriTech expect to increase the awareness and inspire actions of government agencies and parents in enhancing the biometric security solutions to curb, control and eliminate such concerns to ensure children safety in Kenya.

This event is actually a continuation of the successful deployment of iris recognition based time tracking system at 300 schools in Kenya last year under the ownership of the Kenya Ministry of Education. This project is expected to expand more after it has been sponsored by Microsoft recently. Specifically Microsoft launched a web-based application used Iritech iris scanner connecting to a low cost Android phone or tablet via USB.

The system is automated and provides a convenient way to quickly record student check-in and check-out times. By using this application, parents will receive text messages if their child is late or absent from school and then solve the issues quickly before they get out of hand. As said by Mr Sila, director of operations at Data Vault Systems: “Since iris biometrics is unique to all humans, it could be applied to promptly detect missing children to address the rescued solutions timely. Besides that, it can help to positively identify rescued kids and reunite them with loved ones in a matter of minutes as opposed to days, weeks, years and in most cases never”. 

Ref: http://www.planetbiometrics.com/article-details/i/4792/desc/iritech-highlights-how-biometrics-can-combat-child-trafficking-in-africa/