windows facial recognition.jpgBoth Windows 7 and Vista (32-bit or 64-bit) users can take advantage of Blink, which is an awesome free utility for letting you login to your computer using facial recognition. It’s actually pretty cool how it all works, and in my own testing I was surprised that it could pick me up even with modifications to my appearance.

One of the other cool things about Blink is that you can still login using your normal password, and if you do it will snap an image so that you can see a history of who has logged in not using the facial recognition.

Here’s an overview of the features offered by the app:

  • Reliable Login under Varying Conditions
    You can login day or night. Sophisticated face recognition algorithms automatically adjust for varying lighting conditions, making login possible whether window or artificial lighting is used.
  • New Haircut? Swapping Glasses for Contacts? No Problem!
    Advanced biometric identification algorithms used enable it to adjust to changes in your personal appearance. Grow a beard or mustache, or shave it off. Use makeup or dye your hair. Wear or remove glasses or contact lenses – Blink! will recognize your and let you login to your PC, no matter what.
  • Improved Security
    Say goodbye to those long, complex passwords demanded by your corporate security policy. With Blink!, you can sign into your account by simply looking at a webcam. There are no false positives and no delays in authorizing access.
  • Catch Identity Thieves
    Blink! provides additional security benefits by making it easier for you to automatically unlock your PCs by simply looking into a webcam. Stolen passwords are becoming less of an issue as Blink! photographs and timestamps you every time you login, whether you use a password or a biometric sign-in. Journaling account logins helps identify hijacked accounts and can determine who logged in using stolen credentials.

There are also some settings that you can play with, and I wasn’t quite sure at first what the difference was between the “high security” and “high convenience” modes were. I looked through the manual and found that the convenience mode will continually train itself with images each time you “manually” login using a password, whereas the security mode will only do comparisons against the template image you take.

If you’ve been looking for a cool new way to login to your machine I definitely recommend checking out Blink. It’s free, and works on both Windows 7 and Vista.

UPDATE: The company has decided to make this a paid-only app. I’ve posted a mirror of the free version that I had downloaded though.

Blink Homepage (Windows 7/Vista only; 32/64-bit; Freeware)