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  • Philip Osadebay - Tech Journalist

Understanding Biometrics: Types of Biometrics

Almost every mobile service today requires verification for performing each process. Users

may be unable to remember all the necessary passwords for every service. Most of us are

guilty of using weak passwords. However, a large percentage of people are still getting to

understand biometrics and its usefulness.



Biometrics has been used for advanced layer security for many personal and enterprise

systems. Biometric identity has informed many to be alert of its use. Traditional password

systems have been in use for a long time and have proven to be compromised by

cybercriminals. They have devised many illegitimate ways to infiltrate legacy systems, and

many companies are looking to move to use biometrics. The purpose of biometrics is to

create a link proof of identity to our bodies and our daily behavior patterns.


In this article, we explore the basics of biometrics and its usefulness.


What is Biometrics?

Biometrics can be defined as physical characteristics or biological measurements used to

identify different individuals. Facial recognition, Retina scans and fingerprint mapping are

the most available biometrics options.


Types of Biometrics

Biometrics often used for security can be divided into three:

1. Biological Biometrics

2. Behavioural Biometrics

3. Morphological Biometrics


1. Biological Biometrics: This biometric uses traits at a molecular and genetic level. The

traits may include features like blood or DNA, which a sample from your body fluids can

measure.


2. Behavioral Biometrics: This could be set based on forms exclusive to each individual. It's

measured by how you speak, how you walk or how you type on your keyboard can be used

to identify your identity if the patterns are appropriately tracked.


3. Morphological Biometrics: This entails the structure of the human body. It comprises

physical traits like your fingerprint, your eye and the shape of your face.


Benefits of Biometrics

● It is convenient to use

● Biometrics cannot be stolen and are challenging to impersonate

● Biometric authentication can eliminate payment fraud activities

● It is unique to the user

● It saves time for customers and the business world

● Fingerprint and biometric processing performance are optimised unusually.


How Biometric Security Works

Biometric identification is the key to unlocking personal access. The physical

characteristics of the human body are relatively unique to an individual. Each individual

has a biometric identity to augment or replace passwords for restricted access

rooms/buildings, phones, and buildings.


When biometric data is recorded, it is saved to correspond with prospective attempts on

access. Most data are encoded and stored within the device or remote server. Advanced

biometrics are also used to safeguard sensitive valuables and documents.


There are typical examples of biometric security, which include:

● Fingerprint scanning

● Facial Recognition

● Iris Recognition

● Heart- Rate Sensors

● Voice Recognition


Identity and Privacy Concerns of Biometrics

Despite the popularity of Biometrics, there are some concerns about biometrics and the

influence of facial recognition technology on privacy. Biometric authentication is suitable,

although privacy activists fear biometric security may override personal security. The fear is

that if wrong actors can get a hold of personal data, they can compromise and use it

without permission. In a country like China, facial recognition measures their everyday life.

Presently Chicago, New York and Moscow are networking CCTV cameras for facial

recognition in their cities to assist local police in fighting crime.


Biometric Scanners Are They Safe?

Tech giant Apple detailed that a stranger unlocking someone else’s phone is 1 in 1,000,000,

making it safer than other biometric authentication devices. The unique challenge of

biometric scanners is that they can be cheated even for facial recognition. However,

researchers at the University of North Carolina took about 20 pictures of the different

volunteers on social media to construct 3-D models of their faces. The researchers

successfully broke through four of the five security systems tested. Biometrics is

considered the most excellent secure form of verification and the simplest from an

end-user standpoint. It relieves an individual from remembering their ID number or

complex password strings.


Can biometrics be hacked?

Though the awareness of biometrics looks incredible, it has not been the mainstay of

success—previous attempts at developing biometric authentication succeeded in

producing mixed results. Regardless of fingerprint scanners being widely available for a

while, innovations like voice-based verification for banking were less achievable. In 2017, a

reporter Dan Simmons revealed that he got access to sign into HSBC's mobile banking

system by impersonating his twin brother’s voice. Facial recognition isn’t without faults,

either. Another recently occurred concerning Samsung devices revealed that Galaxy S10's

ultrasonic sensor could be unlocked easily using a 3D-printed fingerprint.


This is principally because the primary ethics of biometric authentication are efficient, and

the pace of technology has verbalised its expansion. Regrettably, the tech industry is yet to

provide a highly-accurate system.


In Summary, biometrics is a rising way to authenticate identity for cybersecurity systems.

Presently, biometrics is still more advisable than a minimum character-based password for

a single verification. Protecting your behavioural and physical traits with other

authentications is the most robust known security.


Biometric technology provides compelling security solutions. Despite the risks, the systems

are suitable and rigid to duplicate. Furthermore, these systems will carry on to advance for

a very long time in the future.

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