The end of Windows Hello, or a new biometric dawn? — Microsoft unveils a new facial recognition security system

Microsoft Entra Verified ID Face Check
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft has unveiled a new facial recognition security tool aimed at helping businesses ensure their systems remain safe and protected.

The company says its new Face Check tool for Microsoft Entra Verified ID provides, "a secure and easy-to-use experience for digitally verifying many aspects of our identity."

Microsoft says the new tool will be particularly useful across workplace and education settings, offering businesses and other organizations a much more secure way to allow access.

Face Check for Microsoft Entra Verified ID

"As fraud skyrockets for businesses and consumers, and fraud tactics become increasingly complex—especially with advancements in generative AI—identity verification has never been more important," Ankur Patel, Head of Product for Microsoft Entra Verified ID noted in a blog post announcing the news.

The company sees its upgraded system as acting like a digital equivalent to physical ID such as a driver's license or passport, offering a quick and secure way to confirm your identity, especially as businesses face rising levels of fraud and identity theft scams.

Microsoft says the checks could prove useful in situations such as verifying an employee trying to access HR or payroll information, or a user attempting to reset or set up a new password.

The technology is based on open standards, with verification carried out via a simple API, all powered by Microsoft Azure AI tools. It works by matching a user’s real-time selfie and the photo from their identity document (such as a passport or driver’s license) to verify a user's identity.

Microsoft says that as it only shares the match results and not any sensitive identity data, Face Check is able to offer improved user privacy while allowing organizations to ensure authentic identities.

Face Check is available from today, and the company says it can be set up in less than five minutes, with users providing a photo from their Microsoft 365 account, and the Microsoft Authenticator app carrying out the verification process.

It remains to be seen if the feature will be rolled to, or even supplant, Windows Hello, the company's current biometric authentication tool. Announced in 2016, the system allows users to access their devices using facial recognition or a fingerprint scan alongside more traditional security tools such as a PIN.

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Mike Moore
Deputy Editor, TechRadar Pro

Mike Moore is Deputy Editor at TechRadar Pro. He has worked as a B2B and B2C tech journalist for nearly a decade, including at one of the UK's leading national newspapers and fellow Future title ITProPortal, and when he's not keeping track of all the latest enterprise and workplace trends, can most likely be found watching, following or taking part in some kind of sport.