Biometrics Technology- The Present and The Future

February 9, 2022

Understanding Biometrics

‘Specifically, biometrics refers to the measurement of an individual’s intrinsic features, mainly their biological and physical characteristics.’

Fingerprints are also a type but they lost their worth when gelatin fingerprints were used to unlock iPhone 5. To further minimize this, multimodal biometrics have taken over. One can fake a fingerprint but not the retina and face structure which is detected by in-depth AI technology. If somehow, one manages to do that, the DNA and structure of the veins won’t allow such intruding. Voice recognition and digital signature have also made it hard enough. Biometric technology is now installed almost everywhere including software houses, military facilities, online websites, electronic devices, etc. This is well proven by the increase in active phones from 2016 to 2020 with enabled biometrics such as Apple Touch and Face ID and fingerprint and face scanners in Androids, in regions of North America, Western Europe, and the Asia Pacific, rising from 68 to 80 percent. 

Passwords are long gone and people who still use these old methods are more vulnerable. For increased protection, biometrics is a must, which prevents unauthorized access. So much so, the government is now issuing e-passports and national identity cards which have a chip with a fingerprint enrolled in them.


The origin of biometrics can be traced back to 1858 when for the first time fingerprints were used in a commercial setting by a British administrator named William James Herschel. He used fingerprints for the signing of contracts by his subcontractors. This method was later adopted by a French policeman in the 19th century. Bertillon used body measurements to identify re-offending criminals and to keep records of offenders. 

Moving on

Biometrics are divided into two points, authentication; focusing on the physical and behavioral traits, fingerprints, retina, navigational patterns, typing speed, movements for instance, and identification; measuring the biological traits such as DNA, the structure of the body, vein patterns, BMI and more. 

With the rise in frauds and thefts, a shift has become necessary, from traditional password and two-way authentication (entering password and receiving code on contact number) to biometric log-ins. The solution to this is the 2-factor authentication which stores the data at the backend and grants access while measuring your typing speed and movement on the screen, keypad, or whatever medium is in use. 

Europe in 2021, has introduced many technologies such as augmented reality, virtual reality, biometrics, and more, collectively known as augmented humanity which is foreseen to reach over 50 billion US dollars and ultimately expected to be doubled.


Unimodal Biometrics

Unimodal biometric refers to the analysis of only one physical or behavioral trait. It can be a fingerprint, face-verification, DNA, voice verification, gesture, signature, movements, or iris detection, depending on the requirement of the website.

Multimodal Biometrics

There are numerous limitations to unimodal biometrics including increasing the chances of breachers. One having the real fingerprint can be locked out because of dirty hands or a wound whereas another using a gelatin fingerprint can gain access. 

To minimize this issue, is it important to induce multimodal biometrics, fingerprint followed by facial identification, iris detection followed by gestures, or jawline followed by vein patterns.

Demise of the Passwords and KBA

The passwords have been a part of authentication since Ali Baba used the password ‘Open Sesame’ to enter the cave, which dates back to the 18th century. Later on, it became part of everything, may it be social networking sites, official entries, password-protected gates and safes, confidential data, and many more. It was considered to be the most secure method of protection until a rebellious employee Allan Scherr breached the system to gain more time.

Similarly, the KBA also ran out of the list of reliability after the incident that took place in 2008, named as ‘Sarah Palin’s email hack’. 

Past and Now

With the evolving of society from traditional to industrialized, the systems look up to upgradation too which is possible by introducing advanced innovations. 

Public Security

The safety of citizens has to be ensured by law enforcement agencies and to do so they need to keep track of past offenders as well as present ones. To put this in action, records are stored in databases.

Some offenders escape the grip of the authorities, to hold them captive CCTV surveillance can be used in a way that the database has the information of the offender and can be identified in the crowd using real-time face verification. 


People standing in queue to get their identities verified, using government-issued identity documents such as passports, ID cards, driving licenses, is now outdated. These documents can be authenticated by simply scanning from your device in some seconds. 

Why Biometrics?

They are convenient and more secure, minimizing the frauds and chances of fraudsters looting you. It prevents unauthorized access due to its online biometric verification feature. The biometric market is achieving heights due to the realization of its worth and reliability. Its global market is forecast to be about $36.6 billion in the year 2020, with an expected growth till 2025, reaching $68.6 billion. To enhance the protection, saving of legit earnings, it is necessary to gather authentic information about the person you’re interacting with. 

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