Historically, identity or authentication conventions were
based on things one possessed (a key, a passport, or identity
credential), or something one knew (a password, the answer
to a question, or a PIN.) This possession or knowledge
was generally all that was required to confirm identity
or confer privileges. However, these conventions could
be compromised - as possession of a token or the requisite
knowledge by the wrong individual could, and still does,
lead to security breaches.
To bind identity more closely to an individual and appropriate
authorization, a new identity convention is becoming more
prevalent. Based not on what a person has or knows, but
instead on what physical characteristics or personal behavior
traits they exhibit, these are known as biometrics - measurements
of behavioral or physical attributes - how an individual
smells, walks, signs their name, or even types on a keyboard,
their voice, fingers, facial structure, vein patterns
or patterns in the iris.
Of all the biometric technologies used for human authentication
today, it is generally conceded that iris recognition
is the most accurate. Coupling this high confidence authentication
with factors like outlier group size, speed, usage/human
factors, platform versatility and flexibility for use
in identification or verification modes - as well as addressing
issues like database size/management and privacy concerns
- iris recognition has also shown itself to be exceedingly
versatile and suited for large population applications.
Like a snowflake, the iris - the externally visible colored
ring around the pupil - of every human eye is absolutely
unique, exhibiting a distinctive pattern that forms randomly
in utero in a process called chaotic morphogenesis. In
fact, it's estimated the chance of two iris (irides) being
identical is 1 in 1078.
Iris recognition is an attractive technology for identity
authentication for several reasons.
||The smallest outlier population
of all biometrics. Few people can't use
the technology., as most individuals have at least
one eye. In a few instances even blind persons have
used iris recognition successfully, as the technology
is iris pattern-dependent, not sight dependent.
||Iris pattern and structure exhibit long-term
stability. Structural formation in the
human iris is fixed from about one year in age and
remains constant (barring trauma, certain rare diseases,
or possible change from special some ophthalmologic
surgical procedures) over time. So, once a individual
is enrolled, re-enrollment requirements are infrequent.
With other biometric technologies, changes in voice
timbre, weight, hairstyle, finger or hand size,
cuts or even the effect of manual labor can trigger
the need for re-enrollment.
||Ideal for Handling Large Databases.
Iris recognition is the only biometric authentication
technology designed to work in the 1-n or exhaustive
search mode. This makes it ideal for handling applications
requiring management of large user groups, such
as a National Documentation application might require..
Large databases are accommodated without degradation
in authentication accuracy. LG IrisAccess platforms
integrate well with large database back ends like
Microsoft SQL and Oracle 9i.
||Unmatched Search Speed in the
one to many search mode is unmatched by any other
technology, and is limited not by database size,
but by hardware selected for server management.
In a UK Government-commissioned study, LG's IrisAccess
platform searched records nearly 20 times faster
than the next fastest technology. LG has developed
a high speed matching engine, IrisAccelerator™,
designed to deliver 10 million+ matches per second.
||Versatile for the One to Many, One to
One, Wiegand and Token Environments. While
initially designed to work in one-to-many search
mode, iris recognition works well in 1-1 matching,
or verification mode, making the technology ideal
for use in multifactor authentication environments
where PINs, or tokens like prox or smartcards are
used. In a token environment, many privacy issues
related to biometric database management are moot,
as the user retains control of biometric data –
a small template of 512 bytes per iris.
||Safety and Security Measures In Place.
Iris recognition involves nothing more than taking
a digital picture of the iris pattern (from video),
and recreating an encrypted digital template of
that pattern. 512-byte iris templates are encrypted
and cannot be re-engineered or reconstituted to
produce any sort of visual image. Iris recognition
therefore affords high level defense against identity
theft, a rapidly growing crime. The imaging process
involves no lasers or bright lights and authentication
is essentially non-contact.
||Convenient, Intuitive User Interface.
Using the technology is an almost intuitive experience,
requiring relatively little cooperation from subjects.
Proximity sensors activate the equipment, which
incorporates mirror-assisted alignment functionality.
Audio auto-positioning prompts, automated image
capture, and visual and audio authentication decision-cueing
completes the process.