Tuesday, 2 November 2010

CASE 146 - Biometrics

They say the camera doesn't lie, but images can be manipulated and photoshopped, unless you cut you're eyes out, hand and finger prints off, forge you're DNA somehow, then biometrics cannot be forged, which eventually will or could lead to pre-crimes technology

Minority report / Mall scene

Biometrics comprises methods for uniquely recognizing humans based upon one or more intrinsic physical or behavioral traits. In computer science, in particular, biometrics is used as a form of identity access management and access control. It is also used to identify individuals in groups that are under surveillance. Schools, airports, hospitals, office buildings, even pubs, shops and restaurants are investing in biometrics systems. A chain company I worked for 3 years ago had a conference on the matter, wether it should or not.

Biometric characteristics can be divided in two main classes:

Physiological are related to the shape of the body. Examples include, but are not limited to fingerprint, face recognition, DNA, Palm print, hand geometry, iris recognition, which has largely replaced retina, and odour/scent.

Behavioral are related to the behavior of a person. Examples include, but are not limited to typing rhythm, gait, and voice. Some
researchers have coined the term behaviometrics for this class of biometrics.

Strictly speaking, voice is also a physiological trait because every person has a different vocal tract, but voice recognition is mainly based on the study of the way a person speaks, commonly classified as behavioral.

It is possible to understand if a human characteristic can be used for biometrics in terms of the following parameters:

Universality – each person should have the characteristic.
Uniqueness – is how well the biometric separates individuals from another.
Permanence – measures how well a biometric resists aging and other variance over time.
Collectability – ease of acquisition for measurement.
Performance – accuracy, speed, and robustness of technology used.
Acceptability – degree of approval of a technology.
Circumvention – ease of use of a substitute.

A biometric system can operate in the following two modes[citation needed:

Verification – A one to one comparison of a captured biometric with a stored template to verify that the individual is who he claims to be. Can be done in conjunction with a smart card, username or ID number.
Identification – A one to many comparison of the captured biometric against a biometric database in attempt to identify an unknown individual. The identification only succeeds in identifying the individual if the comparison of the biometric sample to a template in the database falls within a previously set threshold.

John Michael (Mike) McConnell, a former vice admiral in the United States Navy, a former Director of US National Intelligence, and Senior Vice President of Booz Allen Hamilton promoted the development of a future capability to require biometric authentication to access certain public networks in his Keynote Speech at the 2009 Biometric Consortium Conference.
A basic premise in the above proposal is that the person that has uniquely authenticated themselves using biometrics with the computer is in fact also the agent performing potentially malicious actions from that computer. However, if control of the computer has been subverted, for example in which the computer is part of a botnet controlled by a hacker, then knowledge of the identity of the user at the terminal does not materially improve network security or aid law enforcement activities.

NO2ID have been fighting against ID cards in Britain for years now, they won the 1st battle, but the war is not over yet


India Launches Project to ID 1.2 Billion People

Army Reveals Afghan Biometric ID Plan; Millions Scanned, Carded by May

Eye scanners along the US - Mexico border

Iris Scanners Create the Most Secure City in the World. Welcome, Big Brother

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