What is biometric technology?
The term biometrics is derived from the Greek words bio meaning life and metric meaning to measure.
Biometrics is the measurement and statistical analysis of people’s unique physical and behavioral characteristics. The technology is mainly used for identification and access control, or for identifying individuals who are under surveillance. The basic premise of biometric authentication is that every person can be accurately identified by his or her intrinsic physical or behavioral traits.
Types of biometrics
Physiological identifiers relate to the composition of the user being authenticated and include facial recognition, fingerprints, finger geometry (the size and position of fingers), iris recognition, vein recognition, retina scanning, voice recognition and DNA matching.
Behavioural identifiers include the unique ways in which individuals act, including recognition of typing patterns, walking gait and other gestures. Some of these behavioral identifiers can be used to provide continuous authentication instead of a single one-off authentication check.
How biometrics work
Authentication by biometric verification is becoming increasingly common in corporate and public security systems, consumer electronics, and point-of-sale applications. In addition to security, the driving force behind biometric verification has been a convenience, as there are no passwords to remember or security tokens to carry. Some biometric methods, such as measuring a person’s gait, can operate with no direct contact with the person being authenticated.
Components of biometric devices include:
- A reader or scanning device to record the biometric factor being authenticated
- Software to convert the scanned biometric data into a standardized digital format and to compare match points of the observed data with stored data
- A database to securely store biometric data for comparison
Biometric security systems
Non-biometric has been and still are open to error and misuse; forgetting your PIN, forgetting a password amongst the dozens that you now must use, keeping those passwords in a safe place.
Given the increase in cyber hacking and sophisticated organized crime, it has become ever more necessary to find and develop more advanced methods of identifying individuals and verifying who they are.
So biometric security has come into its own as the most sophisticated technology for authentication, verification and identification purposes. Modern but everyday examples of these technologies are fingerprint biometrics and voice recognition – these are already in everyday use.
The basic premise of biometric authentication is that every person is unique, and each individual can be identified by his or her intrinsic or behavioral traits. Biometric technology is able to recognize a person based on the unique features of their face, fingerprint, signature, DNA or iris pattern and then impart a secure and convenient method for authentication purposes.
Biometrics is, therefore, the measurement and statistical analysis of a person’s physical and behavioral characteristics. For example, voice recognition systems work by measuring the characteristics of a person’s speech as air is expelled from their lungs, across the larynx and out through their nose and mouth.
The speech verification software will compare these characteristics with data already stored on the server and if the two voiceprints are sufficiently similar, the biometric security system will then declare it a match.
Securing your firearms using biometric technology
Biometric locks can be defined as locks that do not require keys to unlock them but instead require a personal identity. Most of these locks utilize the eye or fingerprint of the individual. However, the fingerprint lock is the most common as they can be programmed to accept multiple prints of the individuals to want to share access with.
The majority of these locks are used in homes and offices to prevent unauthorized access and burglary. In an office environment, all employees may be required to register their biometric data into the system to grant them access. The other major use of the biometric lock is for gun safes or gun cabinets to make then extra secure and effectively impregnable to anyone trying to access their contents without the knowledge of the owner. Unauthorised access to your gun safe could result in you losing your gun license.
Biometric technology gives the user peace of mind. They are very sophisticated and very hard to crack.
Starting with the firearm itself, biometric gun locks are available. How does it work? Attached to a gun’s trigger, it unlocks only when the owner applies a fingerprint. Interestingly more than 50% of the American public now say that gun control is more important that the right to bear a gun.
What about using biometrics in gun safes – by that, we mean a storage place for a gun that can only be accessed by biometric identification. Historically, gun safes have mechanical locks or combination locks which can cumbersome to use in an urgent situation where you have to find those keys or remember a code that may be difficult in a stressful situation. Using biometrics for a gun safe, fingerprint identification means you never have to worry about lost keys and forgettable codes. There is, of course, the added benefit that these safes can be opened in complete darkness.
The benefits of a biometrically accessed gun safe are clear – the main one is easy to access. Older access systems that used a code were vulnerable to unauthorized people learning your code. Just imagine if your children learned your code by spying on you! Biometric gun safes are child-friendly. Some advanced models can also be linked to your smart devices so that you can be notified should anyone attempt to gain access to your safe when you are not around.
The downside, however, is that most gun safes are battery powered. A battery can die without warning. So, there’s a tip, use batteries with a power indicator.
There are many gun safes out there, with different features and prices, you can find some of the best gun safes on the market on comparison websites.
There are some useful accessories that can accompany your biometric gun safe. For example, a safe cover conceals the safe from sight and protects it from dust and scratching. An alarm compatible with your smartphone can keep you informed of any unusual activity.
Biometric technology on gun safes makes the job of lock cracking impossible. A lock cracker will have a very hard time overriding the fingerprint system since all fingerprints are unique and can’t be copied. Even if they have all the tools for cracking the lock, without the fingerprint of the owner, they will be wasting their time.
Biometrically controlled gun safes are strong and built to last. They are designed to withstand harsh environments, extreme temperatures, and violent treatment. These qualities make it nigh impossible to break into a gun safe. Many have tried, all give up.
People own a gun for many different reasons; hunting, collecting or personal safety. But when this firearm can easily be accessed by family members or an intruder then this spells danger.
Old bulky metal boxes are still used to store firearms where installing a biometrically controlled gun safe can hugely improve gun safety. Biometrics is one of the most reliable, if not foolproof, technologies in the modern world. Using access systems that include fingerprint scanners, palm readers or retinal trackers render your firearms safe from unauthorized access. Biometric gun safes improve your life by ensuring your safety and the safety of your friends and family.