Yan Natalya, Reporter
The first biometric passport was issued in Malaysia in 1998. Just 20 years passed before it became a common thing, we don’t even think about. Nowadays, usage of biometrics in electronic devices has gone mainstream and, in the same way, fingerprint scanners and Face ID technology do not surprise people publics anymore. See the big picture! Humanity is stepping into a new era of personalization in security systems.
● Which Part of Your Body Is To Scan?
○ Hands Up!
Known as vascular biometrics, vein recognition scans the vein image of a user’s palm with an infrared ray. The target image shows a net of blood vessels, which is invisible at plain sight. This type of biometrics is unique for each individual and more complicated than fingerprints. Moreover, an infrared ray cannot get confused or misled due to humidity, dirt or a minor injury of the palm of the hand. Additionally, it is hygienically safe compared to a fingerprint scanner or a security card. Some companies prefer to develop an unusual type of vein recognition method, like an eyeball vein pattern scanner, which recognizes iris and retina at the same time for double protection.
○ Habits as a Target
An independent human being has his own walking style, typing dynamics and gesture habits, which altogether become an identifier for behavioral biometrics system. The most amazing feature of the system is that it is working in the background. In other words, a user does not notice the scanning itself while being passively analyzed and checked. In many cases, it does not require any extra hardware to install. All a user needs is software matching the existing device for data processing. The problem is a specific time period during which an AI will need in order to learn a definite user’s data. Developers claim that, to date, behavioral biometrics are mostly requested in the finance sector, such as banks.
○ Breathing and Thinking Is Enough
Another type of biometrics to use are the inner body functions of a user. Heartbeat, perspiration and brain activity make a unique physiological pattern. Some researchers also include on the list eye-reactions to light or respiration. First of all, physiological measures are used for health applications, but they can protect devices as well. Moreover, a certain body function may find a spot in personal usage environment. For example, a headphone would recognize a user quickly if it used data from a brain activity reader to connect with the user’s smartphone and turn on a playlist.
● Optimum Solution for the Future!
In fact, the new world of personalization divides the human environment into public and personal ones according to a smart device’s scale. The border between them must appear discreet. The traditional login/password method should stay in past. And being unique in diversity, bio data of all technologies should be like a key, giving access through the border.
Yes, current options are wonderful, but what developers want for our future is invisible and fast personalization. As multitasking is a binding skill for a worker in the modern world, multi-modal biometrics are about to go into operation. In part, Apple’s Face ID technology has shown how natural and autonomic it should feel. Now, humanity is waiting for translation of the same comfort and simplicity in a complex system.
What if a smartphone combines Face ID with behavioral biometrics during daylight and uses hand readers and finger scanners plus vein recognition at night? We would get a bio identification system, which adapts to both the environment and the user’s condition. Moreover, the user will not notice any process being done. There are technologies to fake fingerprints or deceive a Face ID. But it would require up to ten times more resources and work to ‘beat the system’ of connected bio vectors.
● Flaws to Reconsider…
Biometrics promotion resulted in the emergence biometric software. Like any data, biodata also requires to collect, to analyze, to save and the most importantly to protect. Unfortunately, if we store anything, it can be hacked. Biometric software is a relatively young, but fast developing business sector. Now it requires both inventors interested in it and investors believing in it. All the more, software is a ‘must have’ part of any biometrics security system.
On an everyday basis, biometrics security systems are about to replace physical easy-to-lose keys, but let’s think about the distant future. A remodeling routine today will affect written history tomorrow, while innovations we made yesterday will become an everyday situation for the next generations. That is why it is important to create as strong a protection for privacy as possible. Biometrics has already become an inevitable part of it.