New AVATAR Airport Robots to Scan Travelers Eyes for Lies
Researchers unveil lie-detecting robot kiosks that could help airports spot possible terrorists
It’s called Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessment in Real Time (AVATAR)
Robot uses eye-detection software and array of sensors to detect signs of lying
Once it becomes suspicious, it can flag the passenger for further inspection
By Cheyenne Macdonald For Dailymail.com
Published: 18:03 EST, 28 December 2016
International travelers could soon be greeted by lie-detecting robot kiosks before crossing the border.
The system, known as the Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessment in Real Time, has already begun tests with the Canadian Border Services Agency, and it’s hoped this can soon help agents screen for criminals and even potential terrorists.
The robot uses eye-detection software along with an array of sensors to pick up on the physiological signs that indicate a person is lying, and once it becomes suspicious, it can flag the passenger for further inspection.
AVATAR was first revealed in 2012 by researchers at the University of Arizona.
Since then, the system has become far more advanced, with additional sensors, and the ability to analyze more data.
According to the team it is polite and bilingual – and unlike a human, it won’t need to take a break.
‘AVATAR is a kiosk, much like an airport check-in or grocery store self-checkout kiosk,’ said Aaron Elkins, a management information systems professor at San Diego State University, who began work on the device as a PhD student at the University of Arizona.
‘However, this kiosk has a face on the screen that asks questions of travelers and can detect changes in physiology and behaviour during the interview.
‘The system can detect changes in the eyes, voice, gestures, and posture to determine potential risk. It can even tell when you’re curling your toes.’
Once a traveler steps up to the kiosk, they will be asked a series of questions, such as: ‘Do you have fruits or vegetables in your luggage?’ or ‘Are you carrying any weapons with you?’
While this is happening, AVATAR uses eye-detection software and motion and pressure sensors to track any signs of lying or discomfort.
To separate the liars from those who are just nervous about flying, it will also ask a number of innocuous baseline questions.