ANNA -— A North Texas company is working to make it harder to assume a fake identity on the Internet.
ImageVision hopes to one day expand the efficiency of major search engines through the use of image recognition software.
The idea sparked when Mitch Butler’s young daughter got her camera phone. He heard it buzz, and saw a picture a young girl shouldn’t get. That’s when the mission started, to create software that would identify and flag pictures based on recognizing the image.
"That right there was enough was enough to say we're all going to evolve to using images, to creating images. That's what UGC - user generated content - is," Butler said.
Its software teaches computers to see and understand visual content, rather than sorting images based on keywords.
Currently, the private company offers its service for a variety of social networking websites and is able to search images within a finite database. For example, catching duplicate profiles on a social networking site.
"You can see that the numbers from the account profile are different, and yet there's the same imagery in each profile. So right away what our technology does is flag that to be able to say, ‘Hey, we found this image in multiple profiles. This looks like it's fraudulent. Further investigation needs to happen.’”
The dangers of duplicate identities were made apparent just last week.
Homeland Security investigators made 14 arrests connected to a child pornography site. At least 250 victims were identified across the world.
Butler said software like his - applied on a broader scale - could identify parents if their children’s picture is popping up somewhere it shouldn’t be, and if someone contacting you isn’t who they say they are.