Chinese banks start scanning borrowers’ facial movements – Financial Times (Paywall)

What happened: Ping An, a Chinese financial services conglomerate, is now testing self-developed facial recognition technology to detect a borrower’s facial micro-expressions for analysis of potential fraud. Additionally, the technology supports remote lending by using the camera on a smartphone. However, the reliability of micro-expression systems is still under discussion even in academia.

Why it’s important: The detection and analysis of facial micro-expressions are extended uses of China’s widely implemented facial recognition. This signals that the technology in the country is aggressively building on existing applications. Meanwhile, the country’s lack of comprehensive data protection regulations and Beijing’s ambition in national security control will foster the technology’s expansion and penetration.

Runhua Zhao is a technology reporter based in Beijing. Connect with her via email:

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