Iris Recognition: The Fingerprint of the Eye
There are going to be plenty of obstacles as new technologies are unveiled, and iris scanning is certainly no exception. Researchers are now saying that an aging iris makes for less accurate scanning over time (see about Hamming distance in a recent post on Eye Tracking Update). Many businesses don’t want to deal with fingerprinting, and it can be quite expensive to install the proper equipment and maintain them in working order.
Fingerprint scanning originally promised an easy alternative for password security, but years have shown that this technology has some unattractive qualities. Many sensors have hidden costs associated with them when you take into account upkeep and maintenance. Users are also required to touch a sensor. In a manufacturing environment, for example, where there are impurities in the air and on hands, scanning sensors can quickly become unusable. There is also a health risk that comes from everyone touching the same object– surface transmission of viruses, etc. Of course, the risk from this is likely minimal, but employees may not agree with the management’s acceptance of it. Fingerprint scanners have also been shown easy to fool.
The website Tech Republic is a proponent of iris scanning, saying that it can provide a solution to many of the issues associated with biometric fingerprint scanning. It addresses a number of the problems yet offers lower management costs, user resistance, and an increased accuracy.
Iris scanning does not require physical contact with the scanner, and the individual being scanned only needs to stand within a defined proximity as the image is collected and analyzed. After scanning the colored portion of the eye, which is one of the most reliable biometric identifiers, the machine can analyze and compare the pattern with a previously scanned image from the library. The nature of the technology resists counterfeiting as well.
Of course, aside from the aging iris (Hamming distance) problem mentioned earlier, there are issues associated with iris scanning as well. For one, it’s expensive. One scanner featured on the Tech Republic’s page comes in at $2400, far more expensive than most fingerprinting options. At this point, iris scanning sensors are somewhat cumbersome to place on a user’s desk. Still, there’s lot of money going into research at the moment, so expect systems to get smaller and more cost effective.
The future of iris scanning
- Iris Recognition is Advancing. Could It Help Eye Tracking?
- Beware of Problems With Iris Recognition
- Iris Recognition: There’s No Escape with New Security Cameras
- The All-In-One AOptix Face and Iris Recognition System
- Iris Recognition at a Greater Distance
- Iris Recognition That Detects Hostiles Being Developed for Darpa
- Eye Tracking: Iris Scanning to be the Ultimate Reference Point?
- Iris Recognition Becoming Critical Part of NYC Police Database
- Iris Scanning Goes Big
- Can Iris Recognition do away with PIN’s and Passwords?