Keeping up with technology

June 2011 News

Hi-Tech Security Solutions recently published an article in which Suprema’s biometric algorithm was highlighted as gaining the number one spot by FVC, ‘Suprema fingerprint algorithm ranked top in FVC-onGoing’ ( As noted in the article, the accolade was awarded in December 2010. Over the past few months, however, the award has been held by other companies, most recently by Union Community, the company behind the algorithms used in the Virdi range of fingerprint biometrics ( It is also worthwhile noting that the Union Community algorithm is a technically functional algorithm and is used in the Virdi Terminals and template management application, while many of the other submissions are purely academic algorithms and are not suitable to be used in biometric terminals due to their size and the average matching time. Union Community has been awarded the top ranking in 2009, 2010 and 2011.

Letter to the editor

In response to the issue raised by Steve Whitehead from Eavesdropping Detection Solutions in the last issue of Hi-Tech Security Solutions, SpyCatcher responds:

Thank you for your interest in Hi-Tech Security Solution’s article ‘You Are Big Brother’.

The use of SpyCatcher’s range of equipment, covering surveillance, counter-surveillance and personal protection, is governed on two fronts by the laws of South Africa. The first one is the sale of the equipment and the second is in the use of the equipment. SpyCatcher is in control of the first aspect, as in we monitor what equipment we sell and to whom to ensure that they qualify, where appropriate, for the purchase of the equipment.

The second aspect is however out of our control. We are unable and, according to South African law, not required to, have any knowledge of the ultimate use of the equipment purchased.

There are most certainly legal ways of protecting yourself with surveillance and counter surveillance as long as the guidelines are followed. Application and intention are a key part of personal protection.

A high percentage of SpyCatcher’s clients are governments, and their purchase and use of the equipment is completely legal due to our compliance with required certifications.

Many of SpyCatcher’s customers are abroad, which exempts them from Section 2 of the Regulation of Interception of Communications and Provision of Communication-related Information Act No 70 of 2002 that came into effect on 22 January 2003.

Should a private individual of South Africa be interested in purchasing any of SpyCatcher products, as stated in the original article, we always recommend that they consult a solicitor before committing to the sale.

It is in SpyCatcher’s best interests as a retailer/manufacturer to do whatever it takes to abide by the Laws and Regulations.

Best regards,

Etienne Labuschagne, MD SpyCatcher South Africa

Andrew Seldon, Editor


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