Benefits of Biometric ID Cards

Intro to Biometrics

Biometrics is concerned with authenticating a person’s identity from measurements of his or her physical or behavioral traits. Some examples of physical characteristics that have been used for biometric identification include fingerprints, eye retinas and irises, facial patterns and hand measurements.

Behavioral traits that have been used for biometric authentication include a person’s signature, gait (manner of walking), and keystroke (the time between spacing of typed words). Voice is another measured trait that can be used for biometric authentication and has qualities of both physical and behavioral characteristics.

Security Benefits

Biometric ID cards offer many benefits unavailable in other technologies, most of these individual benefits have to do with security. Biometrics offers a level of security unparalleled in identification technologies. Biometric ID cards allow for secure user authentication and a degree of security not available using other technologies.

The current most used user authentication systems are linked to user ids, passwords, and pins. These can cause enormous security comprises if lost or stolen. The benefits of biometric systems lie in the security that even if lost or stolen, they can’t be used by other individuals and are so difficult to forge.

A password or pin can also be shared with friends, coworkers, or worse thieves. Other authentication systems can only verify that the card is present, saying nothing about the intended user. Biometric ID cards positively identify the ID carrier each time it’s used. Because there is no way an individual can share his or her unique characteristics this provides another level of security.

Summary of security benefits:

Biometric ID cards are Unique: biometric technology has been developed around recording and measuring the unique characteristics of individuals. The probably that two people on earth will share the identical biometric information is almost 0.

Biometric ID cards can’t be shared:
Because no two people share the same characteristics that biometric ID cards store information about, they can only be used by the recipient they were intended for. If a biometric id card is stolen for example, it does the thief no good, because the information can not be shared.

Biometric ID cards can’t be copied: It’s extremely difficult to forge or copy a biometric id card, especially with new technologies like data encryption, in combination with the fact that biometrics ID cards require the identity from a live person and in some systems match characteristics with a internal database.

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