Tuesday, June 2, 2015

AZ U.S. Rep. Martha McSally Highlights UA Technologies During Homeland Security Hearing-Video

Use of Deception Detection Technologies Could Assist Agents, Increase Border Security
WASHINGTON D.C. – U.S. Representative Martha McSally today highlighted two deception detection technologies developed at the University of Arizona during a hearing on international border security programs held by the Committee on Homeland Security. The two programs, AVATAR and Neuro-ScreenTM, could aid agents in detecting suspicious or deceptive behavior at border ports and for visa applications.
“I recently received two demonstrations related to deception detection technology developed at the University of Arizona, which is in my district. It looked like very interesting technology that could be used, both of them, differently,” Rep. McSally said during the hearing. “The professors told me that even our best, most trained interrogators…oftentimes don’t detect deception correctly in about 50% of the cases, just human to human. So the question is, “to what extent is the department using any deception detection technology or investigating the use of technology like this?”
To watch a clip from the hearing, click HERE.
 AVATAR, or the Automated Virtual Agent for Truth Assessments in Real-Time, uses sensors to detect attributes like speech patterns, heart rate, and body movement to seek out behavioral cues of deception. Neuro-ScreenTM identifies typing, scrolling, and other computer use patterns to capture motor nervous system signals associated with deceptive or suspicious behavior. The technology could help border agents detect deception at U.S. ports of entry or visa processing offices.

AVATAR was developed at the National Center for Border Security and Immigration at the University of Arizona, the base for the Department of Homeland Security’s Border Center of Excellence.