Biometrics is a technological and scientific authentication method that allows a person to digitally identify a person to grant access ...
Biometrics is a technological and scientific authentication method that allows a person to digitally identify a person to grant access to systems, devices or data.
Biometrics allows a person to be identified and authenticated based on a set of recognizable and verifiable data, which are unique and specific to them.
Biometrics is a Greek word and combination of two words Bio and Metrics. Bio means life and Metrics mean the measure. The biometrics term normally refers to the study of people’s biological characteristics. Now biometrics technology is widely used for single person identification and security.
The Biometric technology is mainly used for identification and access control, or for identifying individuals who are under surveillance. A key difference between biometrics and other systems is that biometrics verification of physical information requires a person to be present, which adds a layer of security because other ID types can be stolen, lost or forged.
Biometrics has the potential to make authentication dramatically faster, easier and more secure than traditional passwords, but companies need to be careful about the biometrics data they collect. Biometrics is used for security systems and replacement systems for ID cards, tokens or PINs.
There are two main types of biometrics identifiers depend on either physiological characteristics or behavioral characteristics.
Physiological biometrics Identifiers can be either morphological or biological. These mainly consist of fingerprints, the shape of the hand, of the finger, vein pattern, the eye (iris and retina), and the shape of the face, for morphological analyses.
In Behavioral biometrics, identifiers are a newer approach and are typically being used in conjunction with another method because of lower reliability. However, as technology improves, these behavioral identifiers may increase in prominence.
Unlike physical identifiers, which are limited to a certain fixed set of human characteristics, the only limits to behavioral identifiers are the human imagination.
Biometrics systems work by recording and comparing biometric characteristics. Biometrics system can seem complicated, but they all use the same three steps:
When an individual first uses a biometrics system, their identifying features are enrolled as a reference for future comparison. Depending on the needs of the application, this reference may be stored in a central database or on a personal device such as a phone or a card.
The idea of biometrics was present for a few years from now. In the 14th century, China practiced taking fingerprints of merchants and their children to separate them from all others. Fingerprinting is still used today.
In the 19th century, an Anthropologist named Alphonse Bertillon developed a method (named Bertillionage) of taking body measurements of persons to identify them. He had realized that even if some features of the human body are changed, such as length of hair, weight, etc., some physical traits of the body remain unchanged, such as length of fingers.
This method diminished quickly as it was found that the persons with the same body measurements alone can be falsely taken as one. Subsequently, Richard Edward Henry from Scotland Yard developed a method for fingerprinting.
The idea of biometric retinal identification was conceived by Dr. Carleton Simon and Dr. Isadore Goldstein in 1935. In 1976, a research and development effort was put in at EyeDentify Inc. The first commercial retina scanning system was made available in 1981.
Iris recognition was invented by John Daugman in 1993 at Cambridge University. In 2001, Biometrics Automated Toolset (BAT) was introduced in Kosovo, which provided a concrete identification means.
Thus the use of biometrics has plenty of advantages regarding its use, security and other related functions.
On the flip side, no system is perfect, and biometrics offer some disadvantages that need to be considered.
There are serious privacy concerns when it comes to biometrics. Some of the major issues identified with biometrics include these: