Every day, we all engage in a number of basic security precautions – from locking the door of our home as we set off to work on the morning, to entering a username and password combination on our computers. Though we often take these safeguards for granted, we also recognize the sense of panic and concern that arises when we misplace a key or forget a password – underlining just how crucial that sense of safety has become.
As we progress further into the future, scientists and security experts are beginning to explore the concept of replacing physical keys and remembered passwords with a system that uses the physical characteristics of a person for identification. Biometrics security encompasses the analysis of physical characteristics such as irises, fingerprints, and veins, or behavioral characteristics such as handwriting or voice to define one person from another. The benefit behind this is that unlike passwords and keys, your personal traits are particularly difficult to forget or lose – and much more complex for other people to copy.
What Are Biometrics?
Before we begin exploring the technology behind how biometrics safes function, it’s important to establish a base understanding of what biometrics are. Biometrics are automated systems used to recognize an individual based on behavioral or physiological characteristics. Disparate from personal information, biometric data templates cannot be reverse-engineered to develop personal information, or stolen to access personal information.
By utilizing a distinct, unique attribute of your person or body to verify that you are who you claim to be, biometric security may be the most effective solution available on the market today – which is perhaps one of the reasons why it has begun to grow so popular. Though the concept has been around for a number of years, modern advancements coupled with reductions in cost ensure that biometrics are affordable and available to corporations, businesses, and consumers alike.
Biometric Safes for Security
The biometric safe offers an industry-leading idea in the market of lock technology – permitting individuals to access security boxes with their fingerprint or another personal attribute. Biometric safes can open with a combination of fingerprint and pin-code measures, or use biometric measures alone. Although they may seem complicated, biometric systems use the same primary steps:
- Enrollment: When an individual uses a biometric system for the first time, it records a collection of information about them, including a name or identification number. The system will also capture a recording or image of the specific trait used for access.
- Storage: Many biometric safes or security systems won’t store a complete recording or image of your chosen trait. Instead, they analyze the information they have and translate it into a graph or code for future use.
- Comparison: When you return to use a biometric system, it compares the trait that you present to the information stored on file. If the graphs, codes, and data match up, the user receives access.
Biometric systems also make use of the same three components during operation. First, they have a sensor that is capable of detecting and analyzing the trait used for identification. Secondly, the computer attached to the system will read the information given and store it. Finally, the software within will analyze the trait presented, translating that data into a graph or code that forms the basis for future comparisons.
Biometric Success and Concerns
A consulting firm located in New York City, known as the “International Biometric Group” discovered that in 2005, the worldwide market for biometric devices fell to $1.2 billion. Now, research suggests that the biometric industry will be worth around $67.8 billion by 2025. Although the most popular option for biometric security may be the fingerprint scanner, it’s important to note that various physical and behavioral biometric methodologies do exist – which look at everything from gait, to skin analysis, and keystroke dynamics.
Indeed, the concept behind biometric security is that safes and other locations should function using the strong authentication afforded by two of three factors: something the individual has, something they know, and something they are.
What do you think about the concept of biometric security and it’s prevalence in the modern world? Do you think that biometric safes are better protected compared to traditional options, or would you have concerns in using such an apparently complex form of security? Let us know in the comments.