Via MARKETS AND MARKETS: The global multi-factor authentication (MFA) market which includes different types of authentication and applications is expected to reach $5.45 billion by 2017 at an estimated CAGR of 17.3% from 2012 to 2017. Two-factor authentication is most widely used MFA model in the world with smartcard with PIN and one time password (OTP) are the most popular technique. Biometric based MFA models are growing at a fast rate. North America and Europe covers most of the market, whereas APAC has the fastest growing region.
CLEAR is a biometric pre-clearance service.
Global trends in the biometrics market in the government sector (Report Linker)
– Fingerprint continues to be the biggest market. However, face and iris recognition is gaining prominence.
– National ID offers extensive opportunities in emerging economies.
– Handheld readers are expected to gain prominence in certain applications.
– Market is expected to become consolidated over the forecast period.
– Opportunities for middleware/software vendors are expected over long term.
It’s good to see middleware getting some attention.
New Biometrics Device Helps Marines Determine Friend or Foe (Forensic Magazine)
The BESD system is an ultra lightweight, ruggedized, handheld portable device that collects and stores biometrics information. It compares and matches fingerprints, iris images and facial photos against an internal biometric database to identify individuals encountered on the battlefield. It is an enabler in the areas of detainee management and questioning, base access, counterintelligence screening, border control and law enforcement.
Interesting approach, having the database on the device. On the plus side, storing the data locally takes connectivity issues out of the equation. There are, however costs. To stay current, the device has to be synched with a central data repository from time to time. There are limits to the amount of data that can be stored on a handheld device. Also, since the data is on the device, there needs to be really good data security in the device itself.
SINGULARITY HUB — The Brazilian bank Bradesco recently began using a palm vein biometric system called Palm of Your Hand to provide secure log-in on its ATM machines. Clients who choose to use traditional personal identification numbers can continue to do so, but those who go with the new system can forego PINs while simultaneously satisfying the national social security program’s requirement of “proof of life” in order to collect benefits.
In India, the national government is rolling out the largest biometric identification database to date, requiring all of its billion-plus citizens to register in hopes of reducing benefits fraud.
UIDAI launches Aadhaar-enabled electronic know your customer service (Times of India)
Under the e-KYC process, one can authorise the UIDAI to release the KYC data to a service provider. The consent can be provided either in person (through biometric authentication) or online. The UIDAI will provide the details like name, address, date of birth, mobile number and email address to the service provider electronically.
The promise of UID is in the apps. It’s nice to see them starting to trickle through.
The scanning system is known as Biometric Optical Surveillance System, or BOSS. It uses a computer to build a “3-D signature” from photos taken at different angles, then compares the results with a watch-list database. A computer professor and an official with the company developing BOSS said advances in computer processing will eventually result in speedier and more reliable matches. Currently, the system’s accuracy is only 60 percent to 70 percent at longer distances. And it takes 30 seconds to process the images.
This milestone marks the conclusion of the re-registration phase of the project, with social grant beneficiaries having received their new Debit MasterCard cards with biometric functionality, issued by Grindrod Bank, in association with SASSA and Net1 UEPS Technologies (Net1).
Since March 2012, just under 22 million social grant beneficiaries have re-registered onto the new system introduced by SASSA to minimise fraudulent grant applications and collections and reduce grant administration costs by distributing all grant payments electronically.
Much of the theorizing has revolved around the possibility that Apple will add a fingerprint scanner to the iPhone, either incorporating it directly in the Home button, or, as indicated in a patent granted to the company in 2012, situating it in a dedicated area of the handset’s front screen. Such technology is far from science fiction—and it could actually provide real, tangible benefits to iOS device owners.
Following Mayor Bloomberg’s remark that public housing should incorporate fingerprinting technology and rumors of Apple implementing this technology for the new iPhones, two experts discussed the state of biometric security and where we are headed with it. (PIX 11)
There’s a good video at the link. I removed the video from this post because of the annoying auto-play feature which comes with the embed code. The video at the link above does not autoplay.
UPDATE: An interesting take on the political part of the story that echoes our Technology-and-Policy theme… Bloomberg is Right and Wrong About Fingerprinting Public Housing Residents (Frontpage Mag)
Though biometrics are becoming commonplace, the debate rages over whether they’re effective (IT Security) but… “If one acknowledges and accommodates their limitations, biometric devices can serve as high-quality protection tools for a wide array of systems, applications and services.”
There’s also a short-and-sweet discussion of the “big three” modalities at the link.
Some Ugandans may miss identity cards (New Vision)
In Mengo and Kisenyi suburbs, many non-indigenous Ugandans yesterday expressed disappointment when officials at the distribution centres demanded proof showing that they were registered Ugandans.
This group included Salim Uhuru, the NRM chairman of Kampala district and councillor of Kisenyi, who has since described the development as discrimination.
“When I reached the distribution table, I was told that I was not supposed to get the identity card. My name and photograph were in the register, but were marked ‘non-citizen’. I also noticed that this was the same case with every other person who was light skinned. This smells of discrimination of fellow countrymen on grounds of their skin colour,” he said.
The title of this post is a variation on the theme that technology is no substitute for managerial skill and wise policies (see here for similar thoughts). It looks like Uganda has some work to do in its ID management infrastructure as it seems that in important parts of the bureaucracy, no one is quite sure what a Ugandan is.
It’s obvious that Uganda has more than a fair helping of ID management challenges. The good news is that it has never been easier to overcome technical challenges. The bad news is that technology can’t force a consensus on who should get an ID.
In May, DHS issued a request for proposals to add facial, fingerprint and iris recognition capabilities to its ID system as part of a $102 million upgrade. The agency is seeking a new contractor to take over the ID management project currently overseen by XTec and establish a new biometric-based card system that complies with Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12 (HSPD-12). The contractor would replace 161,924 personal identity verification (PIV) cards by the end of 2013 and another 116,172 in 2014, DHS officials said.
According to the agency, the winning contractor would also install enrollment and issuance stations at as many as 300 DHS locations to manage at least 300,000 PIV cards. Those locations could include sites outside the United States.
Accenture Federal Services, Booz Allen Hamilton, Deloitte, General Dynamics Information Technology, Northrop Grumman, Science Applications International Corp. and Unisys have all expressed interest in the project.
What they discovered about biometric payments – a technology many have previously failed to establish – turned out to be even more promising than they expected.
The pilot took place in Villeneuve-d’Ascq and Angouleme in the north of France. The fingerprint technology had high adoption rates, attracted over 900 customers and facilitated over 5,000 payment transactions. Interestingly, more women participated in the trial (53 percent), and the most prominent segment with the highest participation rates were coupled partners and homeowners.
“Feedback was very good. Ninety-four percent of participants were ready to use this payment, Pierre said. “The average transaction amount was €58.60, which is 15 percent higher than the value of average card payments in France.”
Read the whole thing.
Biometrics Can Revolutionise Mobile Payment Security, says Frost & Sullivan (Press Release via KIII TV)
With the explosion in smartphones usage, the number of payments done via mobile devices has significantly increased over recent years. As eCommerce becomes mCommerce, the industry has to focus on payment security. During a ‘card not present’ process, a personal account number (PAN), expiration date, and card validation code (CVC) are not enough to completely secure a transaction. Biometrics that provide high levels of security and an intuitive customer experience might be the solution for secure mobile payments.
“Protecting the mobile device itself is a first step, necessary to secure mobile payments. Although a personal identification number (PIN) can do the job, in 2011 more than 60 percent of smartphone users were not using a PIN to protect their mobile access,” noted Frost & Sullivan Global Program Director, ICT in Financial Services, Jean-Noel Georges.
UAE ID programme model for the world, security experts say (The National)
The Emirates Identity programme was established by virtue of a federal decree in 2004.
The national ID card has the cardholder’s name, nationality, gender and date of birth on it. The card also bears a unique 15-digit identification number, which is used for identity verification by the Government and private entities. Inside the card is an electronic chip that contains personal and biometric data about the cardholder.
The UAE is advanced in its application of biometrics to national ID. The article sheds some light on why that is the case.
When purchasing an item, the customer’s name and photo pop up on the store’s payment system. An employee clicks on the photo to initiate the payment. The customer then gets a notice and receipt for the transaction on their phone.
Paypal looks to be trying to process payments in bricks-and-mortar retail establishments with a clever method of substituting a credit card with a mobile phone and a signature with a photo.
The Paypal system uses a human-based facial recognition scheme that humans are actually quite good at administering: one-to-one matching. If Paypal finds it desirable, an algorithm-based face matching feature could be added fairly simply by installing a small web cam and a software application.
Pantech reveals fingerprint-scanning smartphone (MSN – Malaysia)
The biometric reader is built into the phone’s rear panel, as is a small touchpad for unlocking the device. An interesting idea in theory but how it will work in practice is anyone’s guess.
Mobile application developers need to know that the hardware they rely upon will be there. It’s looking more and more likely that, following a false start in 2011, there will be a fingerprint capability in the Android environment. Hopefully it’s here to stay this time.
Mobile Handset Review: Motorola Atrix 4G (The One with a Fingerprint Reader) – Monday, October 31, 2011
Disappointment followed two days later…
Motorola Atrix 2 Has No Fingerprint Reader – Wednesday, November 2, 2011
As databases get bigger, they take longer to search. For a while, and in many applications, nobody really cares. Does it really matter if a criminal database fingerprint search takes one second or 1.5 seconds? A city of 1.5 million people may arrest 40 people on a busy day. In cases like this, the limiting factor to how many times a process can be repeated isn’t in the technology.
But if the world is headed the way many expect, biometric searches of large databases will be moving from applications where fractions of a second don’t matter much, as in the case above, to something that looks a lot more like what banks or large web sites do: handle thousands of transactions per hour among thousands of users with both the quantity of transactions and users fluctuating wildly over the course of a day, and generally increasing over time. Now, how the search happens starts to matter a lot and technique starts to affect cost.
In the biometrics world, sensor and algorithm innovation get a lot of attention. Database architecture and search techniques don’t. This press release from BIO-key is a refreshing change highlighting one technique programmers can use to cope with ever-larger biometric databases.
Accelerated Biometric Indexing Search: New Fingerprint Matcher Design Yields Higher Accuracy at Higher Speeds per Dollar Invested (Press Release via pr-inside.com)
“Using Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) products, BIO-key is expanding the way a biometric search can be performed which dramatically improves speed over conventional approaches. This revolution comes from the use of a highly parallel search architecture, allowing our solutions to perform faster and look deeper while improving speed and accuracy,” stated Renat Zhdanov, PhD, Vice President, Chief Scientist, BIO-key International.
Initial tests of the new accelerated architecture show speed results of several millions matches per second, on a typical PC. This provides biometric search acceleration of several orders of magnitude on that PC alone. “These performance gains mean the required hardware and support costs for larger systems, or those heavily used in the Cloud from mobile devices or other sources, can now be greatly reduced, providing for thousands of times more throughput per dollar spent,” stated Mira LaCous, Senior VP of Technology and Development, BIO-key International.