Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Distorting biometrics enhances security

CNN news story linked in headline above. Cancelable biometrics are a supposedly secure way to alter original algorithmic parameters used in facial scans, finger prints and iris scans so that hackers cannot access and steal the identity of those in the database. The rationale goes that since biometrics are stored as a mathematical template, that it can be altered in a repeatable way for all of those stored in the database, so that if the database of biometric algorithms of approved people is stolen, it must first have the altering algorithm applied before it can confirm identity and allow access to a person. How odd that proponents of this system believe that the altering algorithm can't be stolen as well as the database. If hackers can access the database, they certainly ought to be able to access the key to the altering algo. The idea that biometric database theft is expected to be a big threat to security systems is proof that the technology is not ready for primetime.

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posted by RealitySEO at 9:42 AM


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