How Does Biometrics Work?


The operation of a Biometric system can be described, in a simplified manner, by a three-step process. The first step in this process involves an observation, or collection, of the Biometric data. This step uses various sensors, which vary between modality, to facilitate the observation. The second step converts and describes the observed data using a digital representation called a template. This step varies between modalities and also between vendors. In the third step, the newly acquired template is compared with one or more previously generated templates stored in a database. The result of this comparison is a “match” or a “non-match” and is used for actions such as permitting access, sounding an alarm, etc.

Declaring a match or non-match is based on the acquired template being similar, but not identical, to the stored template. A threshold determines the degree of similarity required to result in a match declaration. The acceptance or rejection of Biometric data is dependent on the match score falling above or below the threshold. The threshold is adjustable so that the Biometric system can be more or less strict, depending on the requirements of any given Biometric application.

Biometrics is often connected with security access control, but one of its main applications is for time and attendance in organizationsWhile potentially offering significant security benefits, a Biometric system is only one of many security tools available. Depending on the application, an environment or circumstance may or may not benefit from a Biometric system. Understanding the operational requirements of the situation is necessary to determine if a Biometric system can be used to meet a security need. The use of biometrics will not solve all of a system’s security problems, but when properly implemented, a Biometric system should be one part of overall security architecture.

There is no single biometric modality that is best for all applications. Many factors must be taken into account when implementing a Biometric system including location, security risks, task, expected number of users, user circumstances, existing data, etc. It is also important to note that biometric modalities are in varying stages of maturity and therefore may offer varying levels of security, ease of implementation, and user convenience.

Biometric systems alone do not currently provide adequate security for high assurance applications. When Biometric systems (something you are) are combined with other security mechanisms (something you have and something you know), those systems can provide significant security benefits. However, the Biometric system must be implemented correctly for the specific application.

Depending on their requirements customers can use anyone of the available Biometric devices or they can even use combinations of any two or three or even all. It is advisable to have combinations as it provides more effective security.

For example, consider an individual who is physically challenged and have deformed fingers. In such a case it is impossible for the person to register his fingers; so instead he can use the combination of RFID Card and Face Recognition.  Sometimes there is a possibility that a person already registered with the Face Recognition device might met with an accident and his face gets damaged beyond recognition, so in such a case the person can use the RFID Card or Fingerprint.

Also there is always a question of RFID Cards being duplicated. If such a problem arises we can provide the individual with HID Cards which cannot be duplicated even by their manufacturers, as each card comes with a unique ID which cannot be copied.

4 comments: Leave Your Comments

  1. I am really happy with your blog because your article is very unique and powerful for new reader.


  2. It is always difficult to find the right balance between security and convenience. It has to be least disruptive to the customers and yet provide great security against identity fraud. With biometrics, higher security is not equal to higher hassle; on the contrary, it is less hassle as opposed to password authentication as there is no need to remember the password.
    That's why biometric is a great balance between Security and Convenience.