Fingerprint identification and verification use the same techniques, but there are differences between the two. Fingerprint verification uses optical scanners, which take a digital fingerprint image. The optical scanner lights up your finger through a prism and detects how ridges and valleys reflect light, converting the information into an image. Capacitive scanners use capacitance, which creates a small electric charge when your finger touches the scanner. The ridges and valleys of your finger make a higher discharge level, and this difference is measured to determine the fingerprint pattern.
Fingerprint verification and fingerprint identification are similar processes, though fingerprint identification involves more physical verification. Fingerprint verification involves scanning a person’s fingerprint and matching it to a database. The data is then translated into digital information and used to verify the person’s identity. Fingerprint verification is the most common biometric for authentication. It also offers high levels of security.
Fingerprint verification is safer because it compares a new sample to a database. This allows for more accurate matching, but the disadvantage is the risk of losing the storage device containing biometric information. However, there are many applications for fingerprint verification. One example is unlocking modern smartphones.
Fingerprint verification is a safer option since fingerprints are hard to duplicate and are not transferable. It also provides more secure information than passwords. Another advantage of fingerprint identity verification is that it is easy to use. Many criminals are identified using their fingerprints, which can be difficult to fake.
Fingerprint identification uses fingerprint data to verify the identity of the user. This type of biometric authentication is popular because of its convenience and historical success. Today, almost all smartphones use fingerprint biometrics to verify user identities. Another benefit of fingerprint biometrics is their privacy. They can be used as an added layer of security over passwords or tokens.
Cybercriminals Can Circumvent Fingerprint Biometrics
One of the most popular ways cybercriminals can circumvent fingerprint biometrics is by taking photos of their targets. These pictures can be uploaded online and used as a form of identity theft. Another way that cybercriminals can circumvent fingerprint biometrics is by hacking into databases that store biometric data. The United States Customs and Border Patrol discovered a biometric database breach in 2019 which exposed the photos of 184,000 travelers. These pictures were distributed to the Dark Web. Another example of a biometric breach is the UK Metropolitan Police which reported that 23GB of sensitive information had been stolen from their biometric lock system.
The best way to avoid fingerprint attacks is to purchase fingerprint hardware from reputable companies. This is because these household names store so much data that they are attractive targets for hackers. In addition, you should constantly update the security software on your device. Even if you have the latest security software, hackers can still use remnants of fingerprint scans to trick fingerprint scanners.
Another way cybercriminals can circumvent fingerprint biometrics is by obtaining the fingerprints of millions of people by using a reverse-engineered fingerprint file. The information could be put together to create an actual fingerprint image. However, this approach is complex. It takes effort, time, and resources to reverse-engineer the algorithm.
Problems with Fingerprint Biometrics
A fingerprint biometric system links the user’s fingerprint with accounts and file access. A fingerprint reader can restrict access to only a particular employee or user. But this feature is susceptible to problems. Luckily, there are ways to deal with common fingerprint problems, including understanding the reason for a reader’s failure.
Problems with biometrics include security and data hacking. As these technologies are ubiquitous, there’s a chance that someone will try to capture your biometric data. A familiar person can impersonate you, so your biometric identity may be compromised. Other problems include spoofed sensors and sensor inaccuracies.
Fingerprint biometrics may also be subject to security and privacy concerns. Unlike photos or other biometric identifiers, fingerprints are hard to replace. The Office of Personnel Management’s data breach compromised the fingerprints of 5.6 million people. But despite these problems, biometric systems have proven to be highly effective in ensuring the security and privacy of an individual.
Fingerprint readers are often vulnerable to tampering because of their sensitivity to fine detail. Fingerprints stored yesterday may not match fingerprints stored today, forcing biometric readers to de-tune, making them less accurate than they would be. This also means that many false matches with similar stored values undermine the biometric factor’s purported uniqueness.