Russia facial recognition ethnicity analytics

July 2021
Updated: December 2021

An investigation by video surveillance company IVPM has discovered that facial recognition companies AxxonSoft, Tevian, VisionLabs and NtechLab have been developing and marketing ethnicity identification capabilities in Russia.

According to Reuters, there is no indication that Russian police have targeted minorities using the firms' software.

Nonetheless, digital rights advocates are concerned facial recognition technology could be used to deepen existing racial and ethnic discrimination in the country.

The Russian government is a customer of each company; NtechLab is partially funded and owned by the Russian government.

Operator: Moscow Department of Technology
AxxonSoft; Tevian; VisionLabs; NtechLab
Country: Russia
Govt - transport
Purpose: Identify ethnicity
Technology: Facial recognition
Issue: Surveillance; Bias/discrimination - race, ethnicity
Opacity: Existence