A biometric system is a technology which takes an individual’s physiological, behavioral, or both traits as input, analyzes it, and identifies the individual as a genuine or malicious user.
Basic Components of a Biometric System
Input Interface (Sensors)
It is the sensing component of a biometrics system that converts human biological data into digital form. For example, A Metal Oxide Semiconductor (CMOS) imager or a Charge Coupled Device (CCD) in the case of face recognition, handprint recognition, or iris/retinal recognition systems.
The processing component is a microprocessor, Digital Signal Processor (DSP), or computer that processes the data captured from the sensors.
The database stores the enrolled sample, which is recalled to perform a match at the time of authentication. For identification, there can be any memory from Random Access Memory (RAM), flash EPROM, or a data server. For verification, a removable storage element like a contact or contactless smart card is used.
The output interface communicates the decision of the biometric system to enable the access to the user. This can be a simple serial communication protocol RS232, or the higher bandwidth USB protocol. It could also be TCP/IP protocol, Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), Bluetooth, or one of the many cellular protocols.
Applications of Biometric systems
Logical Access Control
This market application refers to gaining access to a computer network either at the place of the business or corporation or via a secured remote connection from a distant location.
Physical Access Entry
Physical Access Entry refers to giving an employee of a business or a corporation access to a secure building, or even a secure office from within it.
Time and Attendance
Businesses and corporations, at all levels of industry, served, have to keep track of the hours their employees have worked. However, using manual based methods (such as a time card or a spreadsheet) have proven not only to be a gigantic administrative headache, but there are also many security vulnerabilities associated with it as well, such as that of “Buddy Punching.”
Law enforcement agencies across all levels of the Federal Government are also starting to use Biometric Technology to confirm the identity of any suspects or wanted felons. It has been traditionally Fingerprint Recognition which is the most widely used modality.