Keys, keypads, and access cards are still often used to restrict entry in many buildings. Passwords and physical tokens, which are used by these antiquated approaches, are no longer secure means of access control and come with significant additional costs. Biometric access control, which grants entry based on a person’s unique bodily traits, has been increasingly popular in recent years.
What is Biometric Access Control?
A person’s biometrics can be their unique behavioral patterns, physical characteristics, or chemical signature. To verify the identity of a user, a biometric access control system collects unambiguous biometric data using pattern recognition and then compares it to a template in a database. Because it necessitates the actual presence of the person being authenticated, biometric authentication is a safer and more trustworthy method of identification.
Physical access control, airport security, law enforcement, and financial transactions are just some of the areas where this technology has found use. Access control technologies like fingerprint readers, facial recognition software, and iris scanners are becoming increasingly popular as businesses attempt to meet rising customer expectations for safety and simplicity of use.
Law enforcement agencies have been using biometric fingerprinting techniques (to identify offenders) since the 19th century. Fingerprint scanners of the current variety are used in access control applications, where each fingerprint is scanned, processed, and stored in a database for further comparison. When a user signs up for the authorization database for the first time, their fingerprint pattern is stored with their permission. The saved information will serve as a guideline for future login attempts.
Fingerprint access control is advantageous because it is simple to implement. No cameras or complicated mechanisms are required. All that’s required of the integrator is to set up a fingerprint recognition terminal at or near a door lock.
Many establishments favor fingerprint access controls due to their high security and low hackability. Instead of relying on easily lost or stolen passwords, users are verified by their unique biometric data. This aids in keeping unwanted visitors away from sensitive apparatus and places. Until recently, fingerprint-based security systems were too expensive for all but the highest-security facilities. Fingerprint access control was previously out of reach for many low-budget applications, but the price of this technology has plummeted considerably over the last few years.
Despite fingerprint scanning’s high level of accuracy, it is nevertheless vulnerable to human error. Authorization for otherwise eligible individuals may be denied due to minor flaws, such as wounds on a finger. Fingerprint scanning plus a secondary authentication technique (passcode, for example) could address this issue.Fingerprint access control has found its way to smartphones and other mobile devices due to its high accuracy and simplicity. As the general public grows more accustomed to using such tools, adoption rates will rise.
Face Recognition Access
Using a person’s facial features, face recognition can be used to authenticate their identity. Facial traits captured in still images, moving videos, and live video feeds can all be mapped using biometrics. The user is then identified by comparing the generated pattern to a library of previously registered faces.
Face recognition access control is quickly replacing key cards and other legacy technologies in the realm of access control because it provides a passive, frictionless, and seamless access solution. Users will never again have to stress over losing their keycard or badge combination. They need just stop in front of the reader for a split second before the door unlocks automatically. This offers the utmost in user comfort and expedites their entry into the premises. Face recognition can offer a touch-less, clean experience at a time when many businesses are concerned about the spread of infection.
There are numerous reasons to be optimistic about the future of facial recognition technology. Mismatched items may appear as a result of subpar photography, unfavorable lighting, or other factors. Concerns about privacy have arisen at a time when large-scale data breaches seem to occur almost monthly. Users may feel uneasy about the possibility of their facial image being taken. Using many layers of encryption to protect user data, including AI to enhance system performance, upgrading to higher-resolution cameras, and protecting against spoofing are all potential solutions.
Facial recognition technology has seen fast growth as a result of recent advancements. Facial mapping is being used to eliminate the need for boarding permits on more and more flights. Face ID is already used to unlock Apple and Samsung smartphones. Facial recognition applications are likely to become much more common as systems for privacy and security requirements are refined.
Iris and Retina Scanning
The eye is used as a biometric in authentication systems via iris and retina scanning.
When scanning the retina, the user must position themselves very close to the scanner. The retina (at the back of the eye) will be photographed by shining a beam of light into the eye from the outside. This technique is not commonly utilized because of how invasive it is. More accurate than other biometrics, retinal scanning is still the most expensive technique of access control.
Another option is iris scanning, which involves taking a picture of the eye’s iris using a camera sensitive to infrared light. These patterns will be utilized to create a digital template that will be used to positively identify an individual. The iris’s status as a stable internal, yet highly visible, organ of the eye makes this approach exceptionally resistant to false matches.Due to the camera’s ability to acquire an image of the iris from a distance of 3 to 10 inches, iris scanning is also non-intrusive. Some countries have already implemented automated border crossings using iris scanning technology. Iris scanning is extremely safe and accurate, but it can be fooled by things like dark eyes, contact lenses, and eyelashes.
Iris scanning is gaining traction in the market. Access controls based on iris scanning have advanced to the point that they can reliably operate in low light, recognize persons even while they are moving, and provide correct results even when worn with contact lenses or other eyewear. These systems are finding more and more uses in areas including law enforcement, patient identification, banking, and business.
In conclusion, we can claim that the benefits of biometrics technology (high-security assurance, user experience, non-transferable, etc.) continue to amplify its applicability for access control applications. Speech recognition and palm vein identification are two other biometrics credentials that are gaining traction alongside the aforementioned technologies. Companies that keep up with the newest innovations in biometrics and new threats to the security of the Internet of Things will be in a better position to adopt cutting-edge security management tools.