Before anyone gets upset, let me be clear that there is no issue with Facial Recognition in Windows 10… at least, not that I am aware of. It is not a security flaw; rather, it is a usability issue that I have with the functionality.
I have several computers that I use on a regular basis, and many of them have several accounts – personal, corporate, test, and so on. Because Windows is trying to be helpful, the second I ask to log on, it looks to see if I am there… it sees me, and it logs me on to the account I did not want to use. Ok, so I log off that account, and before I can log on to the appropriate account… It sees me and it logs me on to the other account again! Really, there seem to be a number of ways around this:
- Cover the camera until I enter my password for the correct account;
- Wear a mask (or other appropriate face covering that would likely not be sanctioned by the Gouvernement du Quebec; or
- Disable the Face Recognition feature.
Facial recognition is a great technological advancement… and if you are only using the one account, you should be fine. If, however, you have to switch between accounts, then you may agree with me that there are better ways of implementing it. I recommend, if the product team is interested:
Hey! It looks like we see Mitch Garvis (personal) sitting at the computer. Would you like to log on to that account? Say ‘Yes’ to continue.
Remember when you first set up your Windows 10? Cortana wouldn’t stop talking about how happy she was to help you… why can’t she be helpful here? “Hey, is that really you, Mitch? Stroke your beard to continue!” …or something equally mundane and simple. Not “I see you, and you best not even think you can hide from me, Mitch!”
I have decided to turn the Face Recognition (that is not a mistake… Microsoft refers to it as Face, and not Facial recognition) feature off for now… at least, on the devices with 3D cameras. It’s too bad… A lot of people may want my passwords, but nobody really wants to look like me!