Privacy Protecting Conversation Recorder

Award Information
Agency: Department of Homeland Security
Branch: N/A
Contract: HSHQDC-16-C-00039
Agency Tracking Number: HSHQDC-15-R-00017-H-SB015.1-004-0006-II
Amount: $759,962.80
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: H-SB015.1-004
Solicitation Number: HSHQDC-15-R-00017
Solicitation Year: 2015
Award Year: 2016
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2016-03-14
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2018-03-13
Small Business Information
1947 Center Street, Suite 600, BERKELEY, CA, 94704-1159
DUNS: 078834495
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: Y
Principal Investigator
 Arlo Faria
 (510) 705-3223
Business Contact
 Arlo Faria
Title: President
Phone: (510) 705-3223
Research Institution
The purpose of this Phase II SBIR project is to improve technical capabilities and develop commercial products that record spoken conversations in a privacy-protecting manner. The primary aim is to support the homeland security mission with solutions that enable more effective law enforcement while simultaneously protecting the privacy and civil liberties of individuals. A secondary aim is to pursue commercialization in the private sector, specifically in the context of Remeeting: a voice recorder that enables searchable conversations, to improve the effectiveness of recalling and sharing information from interviews and meetings. The proposed work builds upon Phase I results exploring audio signal representations that retain only speaker identity or message content, such that enabling automatic speaker identification or speech recognition is mutually exclusive. This capability is useful, for example, because it can minimize an individual's exposure to potential loss of privacy by protecting either their identity or the communicated message. Phase II will further apply automatic keyword spotting and automatic speaker identification to diverse use cases within the homeland security mission, such as audio from body-worn cameras and facilitating compliance with statutory requirements for electronic surveillance. Such capabilities could be used to trigger audio recording only upon detecting a configurable set of relevant words or speakers, with adjustable sensitivity controls. Additional applications include smart meeting room microphones that can be configured to record in certain contexts, as well as ad-hoc microphone arrays using nearby mobile devices.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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