OTR Interviews

Facial recognition technology could prove key in Boston Marathon bombing manhunt

How investigators could use surveillance footage of young man carrying - and perhaps dropping - a black bag at the second bombing scene - to track down a suspect


This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," April 17, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Boston police commissioner calling the bomb sight one of the most well-photographed areas in the country. Now the FBI is using facial recognition technology to try to find the killer. Paul Schuepp is a CEO and president of Animetrics. Paul, there are apparently photos of persons of interest. Explain if there's good lighting and a front-on look of the suspect or the person of interest, how does your technology work?

PAUL SCHUEPP, CEO AND PRESIDENT OF ANIMETRICS: Hi, Greta, thanks. Well, face recognition basically takes a photograph and tries to reduce that photograph to a biometric template for searching in a database. So the key is dealing with that photograph, and the quality of that photograph and how much of the face that you see.

VAN SUSTEREN: So how precise is it? I assume you have to have a photograph to compare it to. But what's the level of certainty that you can make any identification with it?

SCHUEPP: So, it's very dependent, again, on the input, the probe looking at that picture. If you have a good frontal of a face, you are going to get a very high statistic potential in matching in a large database, upwards of the high 90 percent with a very small false to separate. So that's important. Go ahead.

VAN SUSTEREN: Let me ask but the database. Can you go to like all the passports ever issued in the United States? Can you use that for a database?

SCHUEPP: You can. And I'm sure the FBI for example, has -- can access all those databases. They have their own criminal databases they will look at first, of course, but anything they need to access, they can collaborate with the other agencies.

VAN SUSTEREN: Paul, thank you very much. I know that this is helping the investigation, and we all want this investigation to be very successful and fast. Thank you, Paul.

SCHUEPP: All right, thank you very much, Greta.