Recital 17 Remote biometric identification system*

The notion of ‘remote biometric identification system’ referred to in this Regulation should be defined functionally, as an AI system intended for the identification of natural persons without their active involvement, typically at a distance, through the comparison of a person’s biometric data with the biometric data contained in a reference database, irrespectively of the particular technology, processes or types of biometric data used. Such remote biometric identification systems are typically used to perceive multiple persons or their behaviour simultaneously in order to facilitate significantly the identification of natural persons without their active involvement. This excludes AI systems intended to be used for biometric verification, which includes authentication, the sole purpose of which is to confirm that a specific natural person is the person he or she claims to be and to confirm the identity of a natural person for the sole purpose of having access to a service, unlocking a device or having security access to premises. That exclusion is justified by the fact that such systems are likely to have a minor impact on fundamental rights of natural persons compared to the remote biometric identification systems which may be used for the processing of the biometric data of a large number of persons without their active involvement. In the case of ‘real-time’ systems, the capturing of the biometric data, the comparison and the identification occur all instantaneously, near-instantaneously or in any event without a significant delay. In this regard, there should be no scope for circumventing the rules of this Regulation on the ‘real-time’ use of the AI systems concerned by providing for minor delays. ‘Real-time’ systems involve the use of ‘live’ or ‘near-live’ material, such as video footage, generated by a camera or other device with similar functionality. In the case of ‘post’ systems, in contrast, the biometric data has already been captured and the comparison and identification occur only after a significant delay. This involves material, such as pictures or video footage generated by closed circuit television cameras or private devices, which has been generated before the use of the system in respect of the natural persons concerned.

* This title is an unofficial description.