The goal of this program is to utilize Presentation Attack Detection (PAD) to identify known and unknown Presentation Attacks (PA) in a biometric collection system. A biometric PA, also commonly referred to as biometric spoofing, is a method which inhibits the intended operation of a biometric capture system, interfering with the recording of the true sample/identity, ultimately preventing the subject from being correctly identified. Typical PAs utilize a prosthetic to conceal the biometric signature or present an alternative biometric signature.

Existing technology in use primarily relies upon a human security presence to ensure the integrity of the process and that a PA is not being utilized. There are some minimal PAD technologies in use, primarily focused on detecting a specific subset of known PAs. It is anticipated that the use of biometric collection systems will continue to increase. As we become increasingly reliant upon this technology to adjudicate identity, it is important that the technology cannot be easily deceived utilizing a PA. Additionally, reliance upon a human in the loop is cost prohibitive for many applications. Existing PAD approaches focus on methods such as Liveness Detection, Intrinsic Sample Properties, or Artificial Indicators as shown in Table 1. Current sensor hardware captures limited information pertinent to PAD with no intelligence to identify zero-day unknown PAs. A need exists to capture more robust information from a biometric sample to identify, or measure likelihood of, PAs. There needs to be an ‘intelligent’ approach that can identify unknown presentation attacks based on knowledge of what a true sample should look like (e.g., normalcy modeling for anomaly detection).
Thor BAA Table 1
The program is anticipated to be divided into three phases. Phase 1 will last for a period of 18 months and will focus on the ability to detect known PAs. Phase 2 will be 18 months and will focus on the ability to detect unknown PAs. Phase 3 will be 12 months and will focus on operationally relevant performance requirements. Following the conclusion of Phases 1 and 2, respectively, down-selection is possible for a variety of reasons including but not limited to underperforming PAD modalities or proposals.

Contracting Office Address

Office of the Director of National Intelligence
Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity
Washington, DC 20511

Primary Point of Contact

Lars Ericson
Program Manager

Update 5/16/2016:

The Broad Agency Announcement for the Loki program is classified at the SECRET//NOFORN level and will therefore not be posted on FedBizOpps.  The BAA will be distributed directly to interested and qualified offerors on or about May 25, 2016. Please review instructions for obtaining authorization to prepare and submit a proposal in support of the Loki Program.

Update 3/23/2016:

Based upon community feedback following the Odin Proposers' Day, IARPA now intends to allow an organization to perform on both Thor and Loki, should that organization be selected for both. (This is contrary to what was said on Proposers’ Day.) In order to be eligible for selection on both Thor and Loki the proposal will have to contain a plan IARPA will approve for ‘firewalling’ the teams from one another. Additionally, any selection criteria for participation/funding at the BAA or follow on phases will not utilize the same organizations support, research, or technology between Thor and Loki to the T&E team. Please keep in mind that any information, including this email/webpage, shared in advance of the BAA is subject to change. The contents in any future released BAA should be considered the authoritative source of information.

Solicitation Status: CLOSED

IARPA-BAA-16-04 (Thor)
IARPA-BAA-16-05 (Loki)
Proposers' Day Date: March 11, 2016
BAA Release Date: June 16, 2016
BAA Question Period:
June 16, 2016 – July 12, 2016
Proposal Due Date (Thor): August 15, 2016
Proposal Due Date (Loki): August 24, 2016

Additional Information

Proposers' Day Briefings

Odin Proposers' Day Briefing