The Importance of Biometrics

Biometrics are the identification of individuals based on physical characteristics that can be digitally recreated. This includes identifying characteristics of a person such as age, gender, race, and skin color. This identification system is used in a wide variety of applications including password cracking, access control, and medical imaging. There has been recent interest in using biometrics for better security.

Biometrics have long been used by law enforcement agencies as a way to verify an individual’s identity. Using an individual’s fingerprints, police can quickly and efficiently match a person to a specific crime. These systems greatly reduce the chances of forgetting the password, or giving out false information, as well as providing a simple option for those who do forget their password. Biometrics also rank high in terms of security by order of priority for public institutions and organizations.

The implementation of biometrics for ID card application is becoming more widespread and common among various industries and sectors. A key example of this is in hospitals, where biometric authentication is becoming used to gain access to patient’s files and information. It allows patients to swipe a barcode or smart card at a kiosk, and gain instant access to their patient data. It further uses the same card to make access to secured areas even easier, while providing security to those who may need it most, and preventing the theft of personal information. In fact, many hospitals and other institutions are now implementing this type of biometric security system.

Biometrics are usually associated with finger identification. In this case, an individual’s fingerprint is taken and matched with data that came from the iris of the eyes. Iris recognition technology has been around for several years, but only recently become common place in the field of identification. Biometrics can either be a digital fingerprint scan of the iris or a traditional fingerprint photo, which may include using both the hands for authentication. A digital fingerprint scan uses stored photos of faces or fingerprints, and is more convenient than physically remembering every finger one sees today.

Biometrics can also be combined with voice recognition technology, including the Voice Recognition Software (VASCAR). This software takes voice recognition software and modifies it to use biometrics. For instance, if a medical assistant needs to identify a patient, he can have VASCAR record the patient’s fingerprint in the “genetic code” area where it stores the fingerprint. The medical assistant can then search that biometric data against the patient’s records and make a determination of that patient’s identity.

Another way biometrics are used for authentication purposes is to verify employee credentials. Most companies store their employees’ fingerprints or iris scans in a database, or on a website, to aid in verifying an employee’s identity. Additional security measures can be added to a company’s biometric system by having employee fingerprint locks. In this way, a business can increase its level of protection and greatly enhance authentication technologies.

Some newer technologies also allow biometric systems to collect additional information from an individual’s face. Some of these additional information might be necessary such as: age, sex, hair color, eye color, and skin tone. Other pieces of data might be less relevant, but could help if the person is trying to access a secured area or if they are entering a restricted area. This type of facial recognition is called digital facial recognition, and is useful in areas where time is of the essence, such as securing federal buildings, high-security government sites, and airports. This can prevent the mistaken taking of money or other biometric data by unauthorized individuals.

As more businesses utilize biometrics to monitor their employees, and as new technology is created to protect against fraud, the importance of implementing effective biometric systems can never be overlooked. There are currently new ways to protect against identity theft that stem from the misuse of biometrics. Businesses that have implemented biometric data collection, and are using it to manage their employees’ accesses to secured areas and information have seen a significant decrease in identity theft cases in the past few years. There are many new uses for biometrics currently being developed and implemented by the medical, automotive, and security industries. These innovative solutions will undoubtedly continue to find applications in the future. However, right now there are more pressing issues facing humanity, and implementing biometrics will make life easier for the individual and for businesses.