If they generally appear masked, the jihadists very often use a very distinctive sign on the media, the « V » for victory. Jordanian experts are working on an algorithm allowing the identification of people in their way of performing this sign.
When they appear in the media, it is generally with their faces hidden to avoid any possible identification. And if it was still possible to identify the jihadists despite this element? This is what expert Ahmad Hassanat is working on with his team at Mu’tah University in Jordan, by developing an algorithm focusing on a very distinct sign favored by jihadists, the « V » for victory. made with the fingers.
Thanks to this new technique, it is a great aid to biometric identification that could be provided. The hand is indeed, according to many anatomists, a part of the body that varies greatly from one individual to another, and analyzing the size of the fingers and the angle created between the index and middle fingers could prove useful in the process of identifying an individual. But the task promises to be extremely complex. » Identifying a person using only a small part of their hand is difficult. To our knowledge, this has never been tested Ahmad Hassanat concedes.
Despite these difficulties, the algorithm developed by these experts is proving to be very encouraging. About fifty volunteers were asked to perform this “V” sign with their fingers, photographed from various angles. On more than 500 shots, two thirds were used to constitute a database with the algorithm, then tested on the last third of the shots. Tests that were very positive, since 90% of the identifications were correct. » There is a good chance that this system will be used to identify terrorists, if the only part of their body visible is their hand making the victory sign.“.
The objective is now to refine the accuracy of this algorithm by enlarging the database and adding other identification factors, such as the length or the width of the fingers. A technique which, on its own, could not make it possible to identify an individual in a formal way, but which, coupled with other identification data, could be of great help.
Sources: ibtimes, MITtechreview