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Biometrics a good idea--to an extent

A News.com reader says he likes the fact that airports are adopting biometrics--for employee access and only employee access.


Biometrics a good idea--to an extent

In response to the March 27 News.com article "Biometrics may scan air travelers:

I am little confused on the stance of privacy advocates that "biometrics is invasive." How? Biometrics takes your hand, fingerprint or eye and turns that image into an algorithm; it is not a physical picture stored in a database, it is an algorithm. So how is this invasive?

I personally like the fact that airports are adopting biometrics--for employee access and only employee access. You can guarantee that the correct person was there. Swipe cards only guarantee that a person's swipe card was used, not that the person used it.

On another note about biometrics: I find it interesting how the biometrics story has changed since Sept. 11. Pre-Sept. 11, all of the biometrics messages were about saving IT money and time and providing access control. "Biometrics allows you access based on who you are, not what you have." "Biometrics eliminates the high cost of managing passwords and the management and replacement of smart cards."

Now this message has been turned to help stop terrorist attacks--facial recognition being placed in airports to spot terrorists. Please, a simple beard or lack thereof could fool any facial recognition camera and database. As soon as you take biometrics out of its proper place--access control and cost savings for IT--you create a false sense of security.

Jason Jepson
Portland, Ore.



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