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NamUs Partners with NCIS to Provide Facial Comparison Services

Exciting News – NamUs Introduces Facial Comparison Services!

NIJ is pleased to announce that NamUs is partnering with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service’s Identity Activities Branch to offer facial recognition and comparison support through the military’s Defense Facial Comparison Tool (DFCT). This effort is a direct result of the ongoing partnership between NamUs and the FBI’s Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP).

In December 2023, NamUs began working with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) to explore the possibility of submitting NamUs unidentified case images for reference against the DFCT. Together, NCIS and NamUs have started submitting all unidentified persons cases in the NamUs database for searching against the DFCT system, potentially generating new leads for your cases.

The DFCT system is a database that contains the two most-recent Common Access Card images of all military members, their families, and base contractors from 1986 to present day. While it was originally utilized to assist in criminal cases at the local and federal level, NamUs professional users will be able to benefit from this service to aid in their unidentified persons casework. 

Searches through the DFCT database require multiple steps, beginning with the submission of an image of the unidentified person and a search request form provided by the NamUs staff. From there, search results are categorized as low, medium, or high probability and returned to the submitting staff member. Lastly, the results are vetted by the NamUs Cold Case Advisory team and provided to the investigating agency when appropriate. Once the search is complete, the image of the unidentified person will be removed from the DFCT’s internal database, protecting the privacy of those involved.

Professional users who would like to have their unidentified persons cases submitted for a search through the DFCT system should ensure that their cases are up to date in the NamUs database. This includes updating all relevant information to the case and submitting appropriate facial images. 

As always, we’re thrilled to continue expanding the services and support we can offer our professional users.

Date Published: July 2, 2024