NEC Maintains Top Rank in 2022 NIST FRVT Report

NIST Ranked #1 Globally

  • #1 in Mugshot Identification
  • #1 in Border Security Identification
  • #1 in Mugshot Identification over age differences

At NEC Corporation, we take great pride in our legacy of creating the best technology in our field and our biometric authentication algorithms are no exception. Our #1-ranked National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) algorithms are trusted every day to provide accurate and secure results across sectors including commercial aviation, hospitality and the United States government.

Adding to this legacy, we are excited to share that NEC’s facial recognition algorithm earned the top ranking from NIST’s most recent Face Recognition Vendor Test across multiple categories.

NEC earned top recognition in the categories of Mugshot Identification both globally and in the United States, Global Border Security Identification, and Global Mugshot Identification over age differences, as well as Mugshot to Webcam Identification here in the U.S.

These rankings match the very real, positive impact our technology has on society every day. For example, U.S. CBP Deputy Commissioner, Troy Miller, recently shared in an interview1 that facial recognition technology, including our algorithm, has identified more than 1,000 imposters attempting to enter the country with false documents since 2018 – decreasing potential crime and creating safer communities.

For more than two decades, NEC has consistently surpassed competitors’ algorithms in the categories of accuracy and speed. This remains true even when demographic differentials including race and sex are accounted for and when subjects wear protective face masks. Our algorithm passed internal tests with a rate of over 99.9% in 1:1 verification when face masks of various colors and patterns were worn by individuals – ensuring security and supporting public health.

The latest NIST results showed NEC’s algorithm outperformed the entire field of 329 entries submitted from all over the world on mugshot identification. Our NEC-005 algorithm demonstrated a False Negative Identification Rate (FNIR) of just 0.0017 at a False Positive Rate (FPIR) of 0.001, respectively.

This same algorithm outperformed a field of 289 entries on Mugshot to Webcam identification with an FNIR of .0120 at a FPIR of .001.

NEC’s facial recognition algorithm is called upon by professionals across a diverse range of use cases in critical moments and is counted on for its reliable and accurate results. These use cases include criminal investigation, immigration, military security and national identification within the entertainment industry.

We have implemented more than 1,000 systems with our top-ranked fingerprint and face recognition technologies in more than 70 countries and regions around the world.

Our team works to create the most accurate and reliable product possible to ensure safe, accessible and enjoyable experiences for every person who uses our technology. While navigating access points can often be a hassle, we see a touchless and frictionless future made possible through our first-ranked biometric authentication algorithm.

To read more, you can access the full NIST report, here.

Learn more about our #1 ranked algorithm’s use cases here.

1. https://about.bgov.com/news/facial-scans-catch-impostors-at-border-as-agencies-embrace-use/

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10 STRATEGIC DRIVERS THAT WILL RESHAPE BUSINESS IN 2022

Digital Transformation is redefining business models and changing the way customers and employees function, altering entire industries. Social and business values surge when people, devices, and resources are connected. The pandemic has been a tremendous catalyst for organizations worldwide to embrace digital transformation in support of business continuity, dynamic service delivery, and realizing the new normal of hybrid working.

As an Information and Communications Technology (ICT) leader with over 120 years of expertise and experience, NEC is sharing its views on leading and emerging trends and technologies to navigate through these changes to simplify your organization, realize workforce efficiencies, and gain competitive advantages.

In this blog, we will explore the Top 10 Strategic Drivers that NEC distinguishes will shape an organization’s operations the coming year and beyond:

Digital Transformation

The integration of new technologies is changing the business world and has altered not only how businesses are seen, but also how they operate and deliver value to customers. It’s also a cultural change that requires flexibility and creativity in revisiting business models and operational processes.

Digital Transformation is key for enterprises to enrich their operations in 2022 with innovative solutions and technologies like cloud computing, Internet of Things (IoT), data analytics, mobile internet, artificial intelligence, voice recognition, and application convergence. In doing so, they recreate their business model, enhance customer and employee experiences, and realize the always-on enterprise.

Connectedness

Making staff omnipresent and ‘always on’ is key for smart enterprises to operate efficiently and effectively in today’s business environments. Successful organizations are capitalizing on mobility solutions to enable employees to get work done no matter their location.

Mobile technologies extend communications, data, and business applications to mobile devices, ensuring employees remain fully integrated with their organizations, colleagues, and customers.

5G and LTE connectivity will transform laptops into ACPCs (Always Connected PCs) to ensure tasks can be performed anywhere on the go. 5G and Wi-Fi 6 technology will drive factors in wireless growth, bringing increased bandwidth and higher internet speeds along with more reliable networks.

Collaborative Workspace

The global pandemic has made companies rethink their workspaces and in 2022, we will see more investment in technology that allows distributed workgroups to communicate and collaborate easily, regardless of location.

Hybrid work has become the preferred model and makes tools that support a more flexible, open, and agile way of working, like Unified Communications & Collaboration (UC&C), a mandatory part of running a successful business. These technologies are dynamic, flexible, and user-centric, and provide easy access to tools like click-to-call and video conference capabilities, file sharing, and digital whiteboarding while driving productivity and reducing latencies across organizations.

At the office, touchless access and integrated environmental control, digital signage, motion sensors, people counting, desk and room scheduling, and voice activation will all support the ‘New Normal’.

From Experience to Engagement

The battle among enterprises for tomorrow’s customers is fought and won on Customer Experience (CX). Companies are pushing hard to deliver connected CX across channels, processes, and departments – making contact easy and pleasant, lowering thresholds, and ensuring swift response. Smart enterprises will reinvent their customer engagement models to deliver customers a unique, personalized experience and ensure a long-lasting relationship.

New tooling is introduced to enhance the Employee Experience (EX) for better business outcomes. Applications and workflows become user-centric instead of device-centric, tools become intuitive, and interactions are swift and simple.

Dynamic Delivery As A Service

Today, people acquire information, products, and entertainment instantly and on-demand. Accustomed to immediate accessibility, this “On-Demand” generation is forcing businesses to be agile and responsive, changing business dynamics dramatically.

Deploying As a Service model dramatically reduces CapEx investments in equipment, space, and resources. Modular services allow businesses to invest in just what is needed now, trimming up-front costs with full options for future expansion. In 2022, more companies will deploy programmable communications to embed voice, messaging, and video into business applications and workflows via simple-to-use APIs.

Cloud-Centric Accelerates

Cloud computing has redefined IT and software system delivery, making it easier than ever for users to signup, access, and draw on solutions available on-demand and within minutes. Adopting new technologies, functionality, and driving innovation is much easier and faster with cloud-based deployments.

Edge computing will help IoT systems to significantly lower connectivity costs and reduce bandwidth requirements, which in turn will boost the widespread availability of services and insights across businesses and society.

While cloud-based deployments can adopt new technologies more seamlessly than their on-premises counterparts, the need for existing infrastructure to co-exist within this new environment remains. Therefore, many enterprises will adopt hybrid and multi-cloud models.

Ensuring Data Security

Capturing, processing, and analyzing data offers tremendous opportunities for businesses to drive better business intelligence, product development, and customer service. However, our dependence on IT systems makes cyber security a key topic and data protection requires rigorous data security management.

As data sets grow, storage solutions will become more flexible and scalable in order to store, protect, and manage all collected information. Real-time business processes and workflows will also require swift retrieval of data. Embedding work-from-home in company operations creates a greater need for data security management during online collaboration.

Secure end-to-end network services are indispensable in supporting digital business transformation, edge computing, and workforce mobility. Companies will therefore increase investments in flexible and scalable storage solutions.

Holistic Business Continuity

The upsurge of remote working urges enterprises to ensure IT infrastructure and application security when allowing staff to integrate collaboration capabilities into their workflows. Choosing the right disaster recovery strategy will be a key investment in the future of stability for every organization. Lock-step fault tolerance and geo-redundancy technology protect critical data that will help ensure business operations.

The unprecedented supply chain disruption of 2021 has prioritized a holistic and proactive strategy to navigate future disruptions, including closer collaboration between suppliers and customers than in the past.

Augmented Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence (AI) will continue to be one of the top strategic drivers in the coming decade – with applications ranging from recognition, prediction, and optimization, to reasoning.

AI and machine learning enable systems that are self-educating, self-healing, and proactive. Augmented Intelligence (AUI) focuses on enhancing rather than substituting human involvement. Extended Reality (XR) combines real and virtual environments with human-machine interaction.

In 2022, AI and AUI tools become widely available through cloud platforms and open-source software with adoption across all industries, i.e., government, healthcare, retail, manufacturing, and finance. Developers at midsize companies will start using off-the-shelf AI technology.

Digital Inclusion

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown how important digital connectivity is when physical presence is not possible. Virtual and augmented reality technologies are removing the distance between people, information, and experiences. As technology advances, digital inclusion will encourage all people to participate in society, offering more potential for individuals to bloom and realize a brighter future for all.

Important steps are being made towards building smarter societies – with Information and Communications Technologies playing a vital role in ensuring energy efficiency, sustainable economic development, enhanced safety, and security, along with wise management of natural resources.

As more organizations become increasingly digital, it’s up to the technology partners to provide tools and stay adaptable to help support those businesses during their transformation. NEC has a wide breadth of core UC and IT products and each stands on its own to help solve common business challenges. Our broad portfolio encapsulates multiple solutions into one powerful enterprise approach to meet the demands and digital transformation needs of today’s organizations.

To learn how we can help your organization embrace and capitalize on the Digital Transformation, contact your authorized NEC Representative, or get in touch with us at: https://www.univergeblue.com/get-in-touch

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How Peavey Electronics Keeps the Music Alive with UNIVERGE BLUE BACKUP & RECOVER

If you’ve seen live music, you’re sure to recognize the Peavey® logo. As one of the largest manufacturers of musical instruments, amplifiers and audio systems, Peavey® Electronics has helped musicians and audiophiles to achieve high-quality sound production since the 1960s. In the pursuit of perfection and reliability, the company wanted to improve the resiliency and security of its network infrastructure and critical data in its SAP HANA® implementation.

Peavey turned to NEC’s UNIVERGE BLUE® BACKUP (BaaS) and RECOVER (DRaaS) managed service offering after the challenges with their legacy backup and recovery approach.

Peavey’s Critical Data Requirements

Peavey uses SAP business warehouse software to generate daily business reporting pertaining to areas including finance, inventory, and sales. Notably, Peavey uses SAP HANA® to deliver real-time inventory information to its global network of distributors and resellers. It relies on SAP HANA for up-to-the-minute product availability and inventory levels for customers. Without this information, channel partners do not have access to inventory information and might move to another vendor’s product to purchase. In today’s fast-paced, online-centric marketplace, this is especially a threat for Peavey.

Modernizing SAP HANA Backups

Peavey required a modernized approach to its backups to reduce the administrative load on their small IT team. In addition, they looked to reduce backup errors, increase protection against cyber security attacks and ensure complete system backups with no performance impact. Another added bonus of working with NEC was the availability of modern infrastructure, including cloud-hosted storage.

Peavey chose NEC’s UNIVERGE BLUE® BACKUP and RECOVER managed service offering to meet these objectives and more. The NEC managed service offering allowed Peavey to:

  • Automate SAP HANA native full and incremental Backups
  • Implement automated data archiving
  • Enhance cyber security by implementing the 3-2-1 rule of data protection best practices
  • Include additional disaster recovery capabilities against natural disasters and cyber-attacks through optional UNIVERGE BLUE RECOVER without the purchase of additional systems
  • Centralize visibility and control via the UNIVERGE BLUE COMMAND CENTER

The biggest value that NEC has brought to Peavey is the ability to offload tasks and responsibilities of its IT team. Peavey has strengthened its data protection at lower operating costs and IT administrative overhead.

Read the Full NEC-Peavey Case Study

The NEC UNIVERGE BLUE Difference

NEC’s UNIVERGE BLUE BACKUP (Backup as a Service) and RECOVER (Disaster Recovery as a Service) offers control and compliance to meet data protection best practices. The managed service offering is based on industry-leading backup software such as Commvault® and Veeam to deliver backup and recovery services. The service also leverages NEC HYDRAstor® distributed grid storage systems that are hosted off-premises in Iron Mountain® data centers. Managed services are provided 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days per year via NEC’s Network Operations Center. NEC will also configure and tailor the solution to meet or exceed your business’s unique requirements.

Typical benefits provided with NEC UNIVERGE BLUE BACKUP and RECOVER include:

  • Meeting 3-2-1 rule data protection best practices
  • Offloading tasks from IT Staff
  • Reducing insider threats
  • Providing proof of best practices for Cyber Security Insurance

Learn about NEC UNIVERGE BLUE BACKUP and RECOVER from this Evaluator Group Product Brief.

Read the NEC-Peavey Electronics Solution Case Study

With the help of NEC’s UNIVERGE BLUE BACKUP and RECOVER managed services, Peavey can keep the music alive while NEC patches servers, replaces old hardware and provides secure backup and reliable data recovery. Be sure to read the NEC-Peavey Electronics Case Study to learn more about how the companies worked together to secure the critical data necessary to ensure continued success.

To learn more about NEC UNIVERGE BLUE BACKUP and RECOVER, download this Evaluator Group Product Brief. Or to become authorized to sell the solution, request authorization and take the training available in the NEC Learning Management System.

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Bold New Ideas Take Flight at FTE Global 2021

For the last several years, the air travel industry has been focused on creating a seamless “curb-to-gate” passenger experience at the airport. To that end, many stakeholders in aviation have had visions of touchless biometric technology that allows a customer to drop a bag at the curb, check-in, pass security and board the plane without ever having to use a paper document.

This year, at the Future Travel Experience | Redefining the air passenger experience conference and exhibition, we celebrated the future everyone has been talking about because it has arrived. Held at the Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, December 7 – 9, we were energized to meet our colleagues from around the world face-to-face at the show. During our time with experts in aviation, we discussed strategies to transform the passenger experience and underscored our collaborative efforts to face industry disruptions with advanced identity management solutions.

AIRPORT OF THE FUTURE IS NOW

Following the show theme, “New Approaches for a New World,” we introduced the NEC Biometrics & Digital Identity Summit that featured a joint keynote, case studies and a panel discussion.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) participated in a joint keynote session that talked extensively about the collaborative work that TSA and CBP did to cut through bureaucratic “red tape” and get technology into the field as quickly, safely and efficiently as possible.

Our case study spotlighted the partnership with Star Alliance, Lufthansa and SITA to uncover how Star Alliance and NEC’s biometric identification platform improved the customer experience for frequent flyers at airports around the world. Click here to see the entire panel discussion.

The panel discussion included key representatives from Delta, TSA, Mastercard, Port of Seattle and ID2020. It revealed how to successfully collaborate, facilitate and scale new digital identity and biometric efforts on a global level.

Finally, the summit concluded with a virtual presentation from Japan Airlines. They shared insight into how facial recognition technology is powering experiences at airports and in stadiums in Asia.

See how NEC I:Delight Enables Travelers to Use a Digital ID to Personalize Their Travel Experience.

NEW APPROACHES FOR A NEW WORLD

On the show floor, the NEC I:Delight platform was highlighted with the help of our partners at SITA, Tascent and Smith Detection. To create a seamless journey throughout our booth, we showcased the NEC I:Delight platform running on SITA Smart Path. By demonstrating this technology, we were able to take attendees through a seamless journey on the show floor, highlighting the simplicity and security of managing their Digital ID. Using this application, travelers can expect shorter lines, faster identification, touchless services and a personalized customer experience during their journey.

Check out our photo gallery and learn more about the ways NEC and our partners take customer experience to new heights with aviation innovation on one platform.

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Creating a Communications System Built for Hybrid work: How existing customers can transform their on-prem solution with cloud-based flexibility

Survey after survey keeps telling us that the in-office workplace is a thing of the past. Offices are not obsolete, but most companies admit that remote work didn’t cause any collapses of infrastructure, operations, or productivity. In fact, 83 percent of employers and 71 percent of employees call remote work a success according to PwC’s Remote Work Survey.

Hybrid work models involve flexibility on where someone works, whether remote, on-site, or anywhere in between. However, this model is creating challenges for businesses with existing on-premises phone systems as they look for a seamless transition that keeps operations moving forward.

Introducing UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE – Your BRIDGE to the Cloud

Up until now, the options on-premises NEC customers had in response to remote and hybrid work was limited. On-premises users had two options: continue utilizing an existing on-premises phone system with disparate applications or abandon the on-prem investment and move to a completely different solution.

NEC recognized the need to provide another option to meet the needs of our customers in this new work environment. That’s why we created UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE. This new option extends existing NEC phone systems with cloud-based communication tools via desktop and mobile apps, creating a seamless, all-in-one communications experience.

Protect Your NEC Phone System Investment, Extend Its Capabilities

Many on-premises NEC PBX customers are choosing to keep their existing on-premises system due to its’ long shelf life, despite the hybrid work benefits of cloud communications; and this is why we have differentiated our strategy from other competitors in this space. NEC will continue selling and supporting premise systems for many years to come, and enhance their capabilities through integrations into the cloud. This is great news for NEC premise customers! If your on-premises system continues to work well for your business, there is probably not an immediate need to migrate to a full cloud-based unified communications (UCaaS) solution. You already paid the capital expense for your on-premises system, so it’s understandable for businesses to opt out of a full cloud migration to see their investment through its end-of-life.

With UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE, existing on-premises NEC customers no longer have to choose between the flexibility of cloud communications or protecting their current phone system investment.

UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE was designed specifically for NEC customers. It seamlessly integrates with:

  • UNIVERGE® SV9100
  • UNIVERGE® SV9300
  • UNIVERGE® SV9500
  • UNIVERGE 3C®

CONNECT BRIDGE enables inbound and outbound calling via desktop and mobile apps, PLUS includes an integrated suite of collaboration services.

Consolidate Multiple Standalone Solutions – Reduce Complexity and Costs

To keep up with the needs of the workforce during the pandemic, businesses with on-premises phone systems turned to standalone collaboration services with the intent of empowering employees to stay connected and maintain productivity from dispersed locations. While this approach may have worked for the short term, as a long-term solution, there are many drawbacks.

Leveraging multiple disparate systems cause productivity and efficiency challenges. Lack of integration results in these standalone tools living in silos, leading to significant issues for the business at the user level. Additionally, using multiple standalone solutions often means juggling multiple vendors and bills. This can result in billing complexities and higher costs than consolidating all your tools into one application, which is traditionally a benefit of migrating your entire solution to the cloud.

UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE brings together your existing NEC phone system with the critical collaboration tools your teams need – all in one single application from the provider you already trust with your business communications, NEC. By extending your existing NEC phone system with cloud-based tools via desktop and mobile apps, employees enjoy one seamless solution with all the collaboration tools they need to get work done. The days of switching back and forth from one application to another are over. Now, employees receive a seamless, all-in-one communications experience for one low per-user monthly fee.

How To Solve Collaboration Issues In A Hybrid Work Environment

Allowing for remote flexibility is good for business and retaining high-value employees. They have different expectations now, with 92 percent of employees requesting to work remotely at least one day a week.

How do you manage a hybrid workforce and all their communication and collaboration needs? Regardless of where your employees sit, they should have the same experience with access to the technology required to do their jobs well. Now, on-premises NEC users can leverage their existing platform to be the ideal solution for hybrid teams. With UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE, employees can collaborate in the office, at home, or anywhere in between with integrated video conferencing, chat, and file sharing/backup.

Hybrid work requires advanced tools such as video, chat, messaging, and file sharing to enable seamless and quick collaboration. For businesses with existing on-premises NEC phone systems, depending solely on the voice features with an on-premises PBX could result in a disadvantage when it comes to hybrid working and attracting new talent who expects flexible working environments.

Enhance productivity and collaboration through seamless cloud UC integrations with NEC’S UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE, keeping your team connected anywhere they are.

How Organizations Need to Respond to Shifting Communications Needs

Business communications needs are different than they were during the in-office work era. While businesses had to pivot to address communications and collaboration quickly, many did so in haste; hence, the standalone applications model. Now, you need business communications tools that address current and future work models. Futureproofing the work model will be a priority for every business that wants to grow and thrive. Thankfully, there’s a way to do this while leveraging your investment with your existing NEC phone system through NEC’s UNIVERGE BLUE CONNECT BRIDGE.

Now is the time to look for a consolidated approach that extends your business phone system to remote workers, protects your current investment, and adds on additional voice and collaboration tools that your employees need to stay connected and productive. To learn how NEC can help, reach out to your Authorized NEC Representative, or visit the CONNECT BRIDGE website to learn more: www.univergeblue.com/connect-bridge

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