A Biometric Security firm in America has announced the release of a biometric-activated keyring solution that gives doctors access to a person’s medical records once authorised by the patient.
The electronic medical records storage product allows for the capture and storage of a person’s complete medical history and files giving medical care givers instant access to a patient’s vital medical history.
If a patient is unconscious then the device has an emergency on/off button that will display the person’s medical condition, medication the patient is taking and quantities. Also included is the patient’s blood type, allergies, if any, and any other important medical information that would assist any Doctor in providing immediate life saving treatment.
After the patient has been stabilised then he or she is able to swipe their fingerprint on the medical keyring fingerprint sensor and hand it over to the attending Doctor. The Doctor then simply takes the portable electronic medical records device to any computer and plugs it into the computer USB port. This will then display the patient’s complete medical history. The biometric fingerprint access solution is making big news in the US.
The company says the advantage of this portable fingerprint device is that it is designed to be plug and play on a PC. It does not need special software to be installed on the hospital’s computer nor does it need special training as the user interface is intuitive allowing for easy to follow menus that will provide rapid access to the patient’s complete medical files.
Ibiza beach Hotel guests take advantage of new biometric fingerprint payment system! Innovative biometrics enabling consumers to pay digitally without the use of a card have recently included 24 gym access through fingerprint readers and receipts being sent directly to smartphones. However, a famous Ibiza Beach Hotel has rolled out what is the first instance of biometric payments we’ve seen in the hospitality industry, utilising a biometric fingerprint reader system.The hotel is currently regarded a technical pioneer having already experimented with RFID-equipped bracelets allowing guests to keep their Facebook friends updated about their holiday in real time. Now it has teamed up with a biometric fingerprint reader firm to provide the ultimate payment system for guests. The fingerprint reader payment system allows travellers to register their print upon arrival at the hotel. Guests give their card details along with the biometric data of their right index and middle fingers. All of the facilities at the destination have been equipped with fingerprint recognition devices, meaning that customers do not have to present cards or enter pin numbers — rather, they press their fingers against the reader for a few seconds to complete payment. Security is increased due to the unique nature of fingerprints and the reduced need to carry cards around while on holiday.
The hotel recognises that it’s guests may be unfamiliar and wary of biometrics and so each registration also comes with an account where users can track transactions on-line and the hotel rewards guests taking up the scheme with various discounts, prizes and promotions.
Unsure about the reliability of biometrics? Biometrics has been supported more recently by huge firms such as Accenture, but there is one organisation who has been ahead of the trend for a long time. This blog covers an insight into how Disneyland have been so effectively been using the technology to keep their parks secure for over 15 years.
Finger scans are a necessity if you purchase any current WDW admission media. In early 1996, Disney began a new system to identify users of annual and seasonal passes. Abandoned was the barcoded laminated photo ID pass in favor of a new mylar paper one. This new pass had no photo and only contained minimal visual evidence of ownership – your name and the expiration date of the pass. What was new was the magnetic strip on the back.
This magnetic strip stored all of your pass information that the previous photo one had plus it would reference one new piece of information: your biometric finger scan or as Disney now calls it, your ticket tag.
Disney expanded the use of the ticket tag system in 2005 with the introduction of Magic Your Way tickets and then expanded it to include all tickets no matter when purchased.
The original scanners used two fingers inserted in a “V” shape. The original scanners required visitors to insert two fingers into a reader that identified key information about the shape of the fingers. In 2006, Disney started upgrading their scanners with single finger scanners. The single finger scanners scan one fingertip for its fingerprint information but does not store the entire fingerprint image, but only numerical information about certain points.
There are often worries that surround fingerprinting. “Why does Disney need my fingerprints?”
The original admission system has nothing to do with your fingerprints. It scans your index and middle fingers (on two finger scanners) and uses a geometric formula to come up with a number that will identify your fingers. The calculated number is apparently something that is not totally unique, but is statistically significant in identifying you. The single finger scanners scan one fingertip for its fingerprint information.
The system has been well developed for the situation as the Disney computer system will tag tickets purchased at the same time whether at WDW or in advance as a group when you first use them. That allows any one of that group of tickets to match the stored finger scan of any one of the other tickets. This eliminates the problem of having to keep track of who has which card!
At ievo we wonder if this system will be implemented into the UK Parks…
When a headline calls out: “Schools put pupils’ information at risk” and goes on to say that a new study highlights biometrics to be a key area of concern, it is clear is there is a miss understanding of the industry the BBC quoted to be “the future of technology.”
The study in question, entitled ‘Identity and Biometrics – Convenience at the Cost of Privacy in UK Schools” was recently presented at the British Educational Research Establishment (BERA) Annual Conference by academics from East Anglia and Plymouth Universities. The study warned that schools must be more cautious in their entry systems when handling of personal data or face consequences including identity theft, parents wrongly being sent confidential information about someone else’s child or, in the future, pupils’ biometric data being accessed by strangers.
The problem is that, while the study correctly identifies that biometrics are becoming an increasingly used tool in schools and educational establishments, it fundamentally fails to understand the nature of the fingerprint software.
Biometrics, such as fingerprint readers, do not require any details about an individual other than their name. Details of home address, bank account numbers or other personal information are not stored in any file or database.
The measurements taken of an individual’s print are simply converted through a unique algorithm into a number, which is what is stored in the database. In fact, even if someone picked up the PC that the software is stored upon and walked off with it, it would offer up no personal information whatsoever.
Biometrics: used to solve problems
It must also be remembered that educational establishments will be using Biometric security once individuals have pre-registered within schools and universities. The fingerprint, palm, iris or face is then used merely to confirm the individual is who they say they are and genuinely does require access to a given building.
What’s more, biometrics could solve many of the problems that universities are currently facing in terms of the enrolment of foreign students. The university is currently banned from being able to issue visas because student attendance is not being monitored, yet a simple biometric reader would have given the university an auditable trail which would have satisfied the UK Border Agency.
There are undoubtedly data protection issues in many schools in relation to personal information, addresses and other confidential information from social services, for example. However, biometrics is not part of this problem and shouldn’t be lumped together with wider computer security issues.
Gatwick Airport won the “Best Security and Immigration” Experience award for the significant upgrades that have been made to its security and immigration processes.
The improvements have been made as part of the airport’s £1.2 billion capital investment program into better security.
The award recognized the airport’s outstanding efforts to improve the passenger experience. One of the airport’s passenger commitments is wait reductions and the airport has succeeded in cutting waiting times, which is highlighted by the fact that the average waiting time at security now stands at just slightly one and a half minutes.
To simplify access to the security search zone, facial recognition technology has been implemented, while dedicated special assistance and family lanes have been introduced. The centralized security area in the South Terminal can now handle as many as 5,000 passengers per hour. In both the North and South Terminals, immigration e-Gates have been installed to expedite and automate border clearance for e-Passport holders.
The award gave particular mention to the innovative passenger identification solutions integrated within the new £45m South Terminal Search Area. In operation since June 2011, the MFlow Track and MFlow Journey platforms, were selected by Gatwick to help revolutionize the passenger experience and enhance security.
In a world first deployment of ‘iris at a distance’ biometric technology and incorporating 30 iris recognition units integrated into advanced eGate lanes, MFlow Track has significantly helped improve passenger flow and heighten security within the South Terminal. This was achieved by associating passengers’ unique iris patterns to their boarding passes to prevent them from swapping with others in an attempt to board flights they are not authorised to.
Simultaneously the MFlow Journey platform deployed at Gatwick incorporates passive facial recognition technology to track and manage people flow through the Airport. Another world first deployment, this has provided Gatwick with the ability to view and respond to real-time passenger journey and queue measurement information helping to manage and reduce passenger queues while providing a truly future proofed capability.
One of the rumors leading into the Apple iPhone 5 event was that the new smartphone would incorporate fingerprint scanning technology. As of yet this has not been included within the new phone. Is this a mistake missed by Apple?
Smartphones and tablets store gigabytes of data. They have banking apps, and apps that access credit card or investment accounts. They connect to email, and social networks. If a mobile device falls into the wrong hands, it’s possible that sensitive information and data could be compromised. That’s why your smartphones and tablets need to be locked down and protected.
If the iphone5 were to have included this fingerprint scanner technology, it would be a game changer for smartphone security.
Most smartphones are locked with a simple four-digit PIN if they’re locked down at all. The four-digit PIN is better than nothing, but it’s certainly not the most secure option available. iOS devices have an option to require a more complex alphanumeric passcode, which would be much more difficult to guess in most cases.
Android added an ability to unlock the mobile device using facial recognition. Facial recognition can’t be guessed or cracked in the same way a password can–only you have your face. However, that isn’t entirely true. If you happen to have a reasonable headshot photo of the individual, you can just hold your picture up to the phone and unlock it.
You can’t do that with a fingerprint, though. And, the fingerprint authentication can be extended beyond simply unlocking the device itself. If developers have access to the fingerprint scanning capabilities through an API, or if the smartphone OS has an ability to store credentials and passwords in a sort of locker that is accessed via the fingerprint, then the fingerprint becomes a more secure means of accessing apps and other sensitive information on the device as well.
Improving the method of authentication will help prevent unauthorized access to data should the smartphone be lost or stolen. It’s important that you don’t rely only on locking the device, though. You also need a cross-device security platform in place to guard against malware and protect your data from other malicious attacks
The rumours surrounding fingerprint scanner access to smartphones’ have generated a hugely positive reaction which suggests the idea that this is the next step for smartphones. It seems reasonable to assume that Apple didn’t spend $360 million for a biometric company takeover if it doesn’t have any use for the fingerprint scanning capabilities it’s known for….
ievo are looking forward to seeing how this industry will change over the next year!
The Underground nightclub in Dundee, Scotland, recently installed biometric fingerprint scanners for first time visitors to prove they are of age to enter in a bid to improve security. For subsequent visits, customers of the nightclub are identified by scanning their fingerprint.
The club is run by G1 Group PLC, who introduced the fingerprint system after a successful trial period in its Glasgow club. The system is used to verify that identification presented is real.
Fingerprints gathered, together with photo-based profiles, are stored in computers in the club. Having this technology makes it easier for the management to identify troublemakers, and scan foreign passports and driving licenses before allow entry to the club.
A spokeswoman from G1 Group said : “The system recognizes most international passports and driving licenses, meaning we can accept overseas visitors into our venues, adhering to the Challenge 25 policy.”
Challenge 25 is a retailing strategy in the United Kingdom that encourages anyone who is over 18 but looks under 25 to carry acceptable ID (a card bearing the PASS hologram, a photographic driving license or a passport) if they wish to buy alcohol. Some patrons have opposed the scheme, stating ensuring they have identification is a hassle. The integration of biometrics in clubs will therefore aim to minimise the need for proof of identification.
G1 Group said the biometric data they collect are not shared with third parties, except with the police if are conducting a criminal investigation within their clubs. The information is encrypted and stored securely at the premises. This therefore presents an additional benefit of the entry system for assisting local police to prevent crime in clubs more effectively.
“The access control system helps ensure that all G1 venues are safe for our customers, and allows us to go the extra mile to make sure we are preventing under-age drinking and the use of false ID.”
ievo love to see biometrics moving into new markets.
The DVLA have signalled that the paper section of the driving licence is to be replaced by 2015.
The plan is to have all driver information on one smart card which could include the licence holder’s photo, any endorsements as well as iris and fingerprint software.
The DVLA do appear slightly uneasy about public reaction to this proposal. It is well aware that the previous government’s proposal to introduce electronic card access failed due to public outrage, and the idea of having almost the same data appearing on a driving licence could provoke a similar reaction.
The DVLA is committed to abolishing the paper section, but it is not yet committing itself to what will replace it. The DVLA told industry publication, Fleet News, that ‘the UK has yet to decide whether or when a chip might be added’ to the driving licence, but it was ‘continually looking at ways to improve the security of the driving licence’.
The UK Government has already signalled its intention to bin the paper counterpart of the licence from 2015, while a driver’s address will no longer appear on the existing photocard from 2013/14.
A DVLA spokesman said: “This will mean that a driver will no longer have to return the driving licence to the DVLA when they change address or receive points.”
Used much in the same way as access control systems, these smart cards seem feasible and user friendly. The only problem would be getting the population used to biometric data and how it is being used. Many may already be away of fingerprint technology and the like, but many won’t be. Therefore, if they are to enforce these changes it would be a good idea to teach people how this form of biometric security works and how it will affect their everyday lives.
As seen plenty of times before on this blog, biometrics have been used to validate many different things, from identity to citizenship. But, something slightly off course uses a certain type of biometrics to figure out…compatibility between partners. Yes, believe it or not, biometric devices are being used to find a correlation between your biometric data and personality traits.
“Based on extensive research, we believe that there is a strong correlation between facial similarities and shared personality traits and values, leading to better compatibility,” explains Linda van Liempt, Soul2Match Co-Founder. A couple with a compatibility score of at least 70% is deemed to be a strong, long-term relationship match. Soul2Match found the President and Mrs. Obama to have a compatibility score of 84%. The matchmaking service launched its iPhone app on TechCrunch, allowing members to snap photos of potential mates for compatibility scores.
Using facial recognition software, soul2match is able to calculate a score on compatibility
It has been, for quite some time, a prominent theory, that we choose our partners based on facial similarities. Like everything else of course, this is widely contested. But generally, taken from a 1999 study that used computer-graphic image manipulation to generate male faces that looked like female participants, if a woman’s cheekbone stuck out 0.3 percent more than the average woman’s cheekbones do, the program would generate a male face with cheekbones that stuck out 0.3 percent more than the male average. Women were more likely to rate faces as attractive that had been manipulated to match their own.
Trouble is, a later study by Lisa M. DeBruine of McMaster University showed that people are more likely to rate faces similar to their attractive when it’s the same sex than photos of the opposite sex.
In the time being, it’s pretty cool to think that biometrics are being used for this sort of thing. Can you think of any other ways biometrics are used other than security and access control?
The term anti pass-back is well known in the Time & Attendance and Access Control industry. Depending on what you use access control for, it can have many meanings. So in order to clarify the term and how it can work for you, lets deconstruct the phenomenon.
What is Anti-pass-back?
Broadly, the concept of Anti-pass-back can be viewed from three different angles:
Using token-based identification systems (cards, dongles, etc.), an employee is able to clock in through an access control system, and then pass his/her card back to one another person to use the same access token to gain entrance to a restricted area. This makes the employer vulnerable to having unauthorised personnel on his/her premises. It can also cause confusion in HR and Payroll leading to overpaying of employees.
Conversely, having an employee sending his identification token to work with one of his colleagues, allows for the erroneous recording of working hours without having to physically show up for work. Needless to state that this kind of pass-on behaviour has a direct impact on a company’s wage bill, as productivity figures and presenteeism statistics are almost impossible to rely on with 100% certainty.
Tailgating refers to an employee following another employee through a door, boom gate, or any other access controlled mechanism without presenting his credentials. This can – to a large extent – be mitigated by the use of turn-stiles. But even this is not fool-proof (ask the skinny guys). If the necessity of providing credentials – be it token based or biometric – cannot be enforced, no system can prevent tailgating from occurring. In this instance, the system as a whole fails, and it is therefore a point that should be mentioned, but excluded from further discussions in this writing.
To combat these kinds of fraudulent behaviour, various solutions have been developed around the following principles:
Traditional- ; Regional- ; Timed- ; and Nested Anti-pass-back control.
Traditional Anti-pass-back is a mechanism that simply relies on the alternative recording of In vs Out movement. A person entering a parking lot must drive through the IN gate before being allowed to leave through the OUT gate.
Regional Anti-pass-back takes this one step further in that the rules build on one another to provide better logic and control through various regions. A typical example of regional anti-pass-back is where a system disallows the entrance into a building if it was not preceded by an entrance onto the premises.
Timed anti-pass-back is a cost-saving solution where the system simply ‘forgets’ the status of a person after a given amount of time. An example would be entrance into a work area where a person can re-enter the same door without having to clock OUT through another door, if, say 20 minutes, have elapsed since the previous clocking.
The last iteration of the anti-pass-back principle is that of Nested anti-pass-back where a designated sequence of entering/exiting certain doors is being enforced. This is typically implemented in high-security areas where the actual predetermined sequence forms part of the security of the system as a whole.
So how is anti-pass-back enforced?
“Hard” anti-pass-back simply denies access when the predetermined anti-pass-back rules are not met.
“Soft” anti-pass-back has a more forgiving approach in that it allows access through the controlled area, but follows that with a notification to the administrator that the anti-pass-back rules have been violated. It has been found that the “Soft” approach has the added benefit of not creating bottle-necks at high-usage areas like turn-stiles whilst hundreds of fellow employees try to enter the premises at the same time. Consultative- and even disciplinary processes typically forms part of the “Soft” anti-pass-back implementation.
Does biometrics spell the end of anti-pass-back requirements?
If one precludes the principle of tail-gating, pass-back and pass-on behaviour, anti-pass-back in its traditional sense become irrelevant. It is physically impossible to clock through a device and then pass on ones fingerprint to another person to move through that same controlled point. The ievo fingerprint reader utilises the traditional principle of ‘in-out’ because the sequence of ‘in-in’ or ‘out-out’ will not work or will raises alarm bells to HR and payroll.
Not everyone uses anti-passback when they use the ievo entry system because it is just not necessary, the user simply wants the biometric as a form of security and nothing else. However, when it is being used, site administrators need to inform users that if they scan other people in or don’t scan out when they’ve already scanned in, they will find out by checking the fingerprint scanning logs. This can create problems on site and could also waste energy trying to find out the cause of problems and perpetrators.
If you are interested in a biometric door access system that allows for anti-passback, please contact us on 0845 643 6632 or visit our website www.ievoreader.com