New technologies continue to offer multiple advantages to companies and their customers. This time we focus on biometric technology, which takes advantage of certain common features among all people to give greater security to large corporations and their customers.
Biometrics is a recognizing people method based on their physiological or behavioral features, according to the International Organization for Standardization. It is a similar process to the one usually performed by human beings recognizing and identifying their congeners by their physical appearance, their voice, their way of walking, etc.
In the early 70’s, Shearson Hamil, a Wall Street company, installed Identimat, an automatic identification system based on fingerprints that was used to control physical access to facilities, being the first biometric solution for commercial use.
Currently, technology has allowed automating and improving these biometric recognition processes, so that they have many applications and purposes, especially those related to security.
All the biometric features must have a series of common elements to be considered as such, which are the following:
- Universality (all individuals have them).
- Singularity or uniqueness (distinguish each individual).
- Permanence in time and in different environmental conditions.
- Measurable quantitatively.
On the other hand, the technology that measures these biometric features must also have a series of conditions:
- Performance: level of accuracy.
- Acceptance: by the user.
- Resistance to fraud and usurpation.
The use of biometric technology is following a positive trend among large corporations thanks to a large number of advantages that contributes to the way they work, their security and their image.
No need to remember
Today, the most popular form of access and security in the world are passwords. For these to be safe, they need to be long, combining alphanumeric elements and it is recommended not to use the same one all the time.
Remembering all of them is impossible and that is why we appeal to applications that work as safes for our passwords. However, biometric technology gets rid of all these disadvantage, it is not necessary to learn the fingerprint as if it were the DNI, simply put it on the scanner and that’s it. The savings in effort and time is enormous for any company.
Easy to use
The evolution of new technologies is constant and it is possible to stay behind and not know how to handle certain tools (either by time, lack of interest or for whatever reason). Biometrics does not require advanced knowledge or a long period of adaptation.
Placing the eye in a retina scanner, for example, does not need a previous training or deep knowledge; you just have to do it. This very much facilitates the implementation in companies and improves their efficiency.
Accessible for all
As indicated by the definition of biometric features, universality is one of the essential aspects, that is, that all individuals have it, so that no one is excluded with this type of technology.
The combination of these three advantages of biometrics means that anyone can use it, without the need for prior learning nor the use of external devices, beyond the installation that the company has to do.
Increases security access control
One of the most extended applications of biometric technology is access control, both physical (in buildings or restricted spaces) and logical (computers, tablets …). Currently in Spain, the fingerprint is the most used method thanks to its high level of maturity, which allows offering competitive prices.
Sometimes, in sensitive areas of greater security, controls are performed with a combination of techniques (another benefit we will discuss later), which can be both biometric (known as modal biometrics) or two different identification factors, such as fingerprint follow by a password or a card. This reinforcement allows to know who or how is and what you know or have.
Allows presence control
The traditional methods of access control and abandonment of employees to their jobs are made with the use of a PIN or personal cards. One of the disadvantages of this type of technique is how easy is to commit irregularities, simply by sharing the number or card with a partner it can cancel it.
Biometric technology helps to put an end to this type of practices with an additional verification that is much more complicated to overcome. In these cases it is usually appeal to the fingerprint, although there is also a less extended technique that uses the geometry of the user’s hand.
It is combined with other technologies
By itself, biometric technology provides high levels of security, but combined with other technologies can also offer more advantages. For example, the NFC that is usually used to make payments with the mobile phone joins biometrics to verify the user’s identity. In hospital environments it is also used with bracelets with NFC that indicate the medicines that patients must take.
Another possible combination is with the smart cards, that store within their chip the biometric pattern where later the comparison is made so that there is a satisfactory authentication. This system is known as match on card.
Possibility of carrying out procedures remotely
The benefits of biometric technology do not focus only on greater security, but also offer benefits that directly affect the daily lives of users and employees, such as the possibility of making procedures remotely.
These moments are usually quite annoying, because they are slow and heavy and take a lot of time. Thanks to biometrics, it can be verified who the user is without the need to be present in a public office, which saves many unnecessary trips and, ultimately, improves the efficiency of the Administration.
Increase in privacy
Biometrics helps to increase the security of the transmission of personal data of the clients, since they are coded by using a unique and personal key of it. Thanks to the great difficulty of falsifying biometric features, the privacy of the clients and/or final users is guaranteed.
This competitive advantage may suppose the difference between a user working with a company that uses biometrics and another that does not, because privacy is a very valuable factor in society.
Improve the corporate image
The application of new technologies, biometric or other type, has many advantages for any company, such as increasing efficiency, security and reducing the likelihood of internal fraud. In addition, these entities are usually associated with innovation and investment in research and development, thus improving the image and perception of the public of the company.
The use of biometrics is not something of the future, but it is a technology that is used nowadays and that is in a growing trend thanks to the great amount of benefits it offers. There are already solutions like Viafirma Documents that introduce biometrics within their applications taking advantage of these advantages, such as the biometric signature and all the security and protection that entails.