June 3, 2021 at 3:10 pm #884
This is more of a biometric topic than a forensic topic, although I’m certain that it has forensic implications.
COVID-19 has awakened a renewed interest in contactless biometric readers, most notably cameras that capture facial images. As Mike is well aware, one vendor offers contactless FINGERPRINT readers also. (There used to be two such vendors, but the other went out of business.)
But if you’re going to proceed with a contact fingerprint reader, you can take steps to keep your users safe (as long as you don’t make inflated claims about your reader’s capabilities).
After Integrated Biometrics added antimicrobial capabilities to its readers, I delved into the topic in this blog post.September 20, 2021 at 8:24 am #929
Thanks for the post John! I’m skeptical of the benefits of an anti-microbial coated platen vs. wiping the platen with alcohol after each use. My task going forward will be to attract users to this site that have first hand experience ;-). As for contactless capture in general, having had the opportunity to work with the NIST image group in the certification process, I understand why these devices are not certified as enrollment devices for NGI. It’s because these images pose real challenge to fingerprint examiners, as reflected light off the friction skin behaves differently then imprinted contact images on the platen.
September 20, 2021 at 10:35 am #937September 21, 2021 at 4:09 pm #945
- This reply was modified 4 months ago by Mike French.
@Mike French, I know that our former colleague Scott Swann was previously interested in how contactless fingerprint readers could interact with NGI. Of course he’s with a facial recognition/video analytics vendor now…September 21, 2021 at 4:09 pm #946
Or perhaps I should have tagged @MikeFrench…September 21, 2021 at 5:45 pm #947
Regarding your previous post… Scott was the one who requested I visit the NIST image group in Gaithersburg. I’m glad I did because I learned a great deal. For example we know from basic psychology how our brains interpret shadows and reflections, and we can play tricks on our perceptions with special images because of how are brains are wired to see lights and shadows. The same issue exists with contactless fingerprints, because examiners learn to interpret ridge structure from contact prints (from ink) or contact imprints (from livescan), yet if we don’t know we are seeing a contactless print, light reflecting off a ridge (or a ridge casting a shadow) at an unusual angle can and will play tricks on the brain. This doesn’t affect biometric systems in the same way it affects humans. I discovered first hand how difficult these images are to compare, because I did do some comparisons, and it messed with my mind. Needless to say, it was a fascinating trip. I even got to pick up an apple off the ground from a clone of Sir Isaac Newtion’s apple trees, they have those trees on campus. I kept it in my freezer until I moved last year 🙂
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