Biometrics: Eliminating Passwords
The use of biometrics to implement authentication is rapidly becoming the norm. This concept is founded on the fact that each person is unique and can be identified by their physical or behavioral traits. Biometrics functions as a powerful security measure.
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is testing the technology at airports with the goal of speeding up airport security. Fingerprint readers compare passengers’ fingerprints from enrollment with TSA PreCheck. They are anticipating fingerprints to function as a boarding pass and ID.
Biometric systems appeared in everyday applications at the end of the 20th century. MasterCard announced the ability for customers to use facial biometrics for payment authentication, known as “selfie pay.” Touch ID became known with the emergence of the iPhone 5S and then 3-D touch with the iPhone 6S. Recently, Apple moved to facial biometrics with the release of iPhone X, infrared facial recognition to replace the phone’s fingerprint sensor.
Biometrics will be critical to authenticate technologies that go beyond the outdated use of passwords. We also must recognize that biometric authentication is not bulletproof. No single authentication technique is attacker proof. Identity security must rely on multiple factors combined with risk analysis — a technology known as adaptive access control.
Behavioral biometrics is a new technology being utilized to access control solutions. The technology analyzes these traits so precisely that a human eye cannot observe them. Several organizations have started utilizing behavioral biometrics, including credit bureau Experian, the Pentagon, the U.S. Army and Visa. The use of behavioral biometric technology in authentication holds great potential for organizations across a wide range of industries.
Say goodbye to passwords and welcome stronger methods of user authentication.