Biometric Software

Biometric Systems

Biometric Systems - An Overview

Biometric Systems

Identification systems based on photo-based identification cards are being replaced with more reliable authentication methods using biometric technology. Organizations now use biometric systems to identify persons and control security access levels.

What is a biometric authentication system?

A basic biometric authentication system is a composite system used for the authentication of personnel. It is comprised of three features. The first component is a biometric sensor to record the biometric characteristics of the individual. The second component is a processing unit in the computer, which first processes and then saves and stores in the computers database, the biometric characteristic data of an individual. The third component is the application for which the use of the biometric authentication is found necessary.

The above processing unit in the computer comprises three units again. The first unit is a characteristic extraction unit, which filters the uniqueness data out from raw data sent by the biometric sensor and combines that data into the request template. The second unit is a comparison unit, which matches the request template with the reference data template and evaluates the result as a score value. The third unit is a decision-making unit that takes the score-value and the threshold value to determine a two-valued decision (authorized and debarred).

What speed of computation is required by a biometric authentication system?

The speed of computation required by a biometric authentication system is 100 million operations per second. This speed has been achieved only recently by PCs and digital signal processing systems (DSPs).

Biometric systems make use of the physical and behavioral characteristics of an individual for digital analysis. The processing system authenticates based on the biometric reference data of the individual already stored in the computer. Biometric fingerprint systems are regularly used by organizations to control mobile devices such as laptops.

Organizations use biometric identification systems as it improves security and eliminates fraud. Every human being is biologically different and has a different combination of physical and behavioral traits/characteristics. These unique characteristics help organizations to differentiate between imposters and genuine authorized individuals.

The various biometric characteristics used in biometric systems are face recognition, fingerprint recognition, hand geometry recognition, voice recognition, iris recognition, and dynamic signature recognition. Biometric systems provide a better level of security to the organization. The use of a biometric system also eliminates the need to carry an access card and to remember a password or pin number. This improves efficiency for the organization.

Some industries in which biometric systems are used are banks and other financial institutions, immigration and border control points, health care and physical access control, computer security and telecommunications.

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