Nowadays, biometrics are being used increasingly around the world, not only in enterprise-level security systems but also on a personal level. This is because of their foolproof nature and human biology’s unique identifiers. Before we move on to how it works, let’s have a look at what biometrics means. You all must have heard of facial recognition, right? It’s sometimes present on our phones too and is part of biometrics too. Basically, biometrics refers to anything that is related to biological measurements that can, in turn, be used to identify an individual.
Types of Biometric Security
Now that you have a brief idea of biometrics let’s look at the types of biometrics used for security purposes. Even though there are other purposes for which biometrics are used, security is where it is used the most, and hence, there are three major types that one should know about.
- Biological Biometrics – As you can probably understand from the name, these are more on the molecular and genetic levels. They often involve blood or even DNA.
- Morphological Biometrics – Then there is the type that is more about the structure of your body and the physical traits. These involve the shape of your face, fingerprint, eyes, and so on.
- Behavioral Biometrics – Thirdly, this type of biometrics is more about patterns in behavior that are unique to each and every person and are often indicative of the type of person you are.
How Are Biometrics Used in Access Control?
The science behind access control is becoming advanced with each passing day. Even small businesses are enhancing cybersecurity through the incorporation of biometrics. Biometric access control systems are made with built-in scanners that have the ability to read data from your body. For example, if it’s a fingerprint scanner, then it will scan your fingerprint and then keep it safely stored in the data file. So, whenever you choose to access this data, you will have to show the registered fingerprints. Otherwise, you won’t be allowed access.
But fingerprints are only one among many such biometric scanners that are available. This was one of the easiest ways to make you understand how biometrics work.
Retina scanning is also one of the popular methods of biometric security, but here, instead of your fingerprints, your retinas are scanned. These days, facial recognition is also gaining more and more popularity. This is mainly owing to the iPhone X that was launched with this feature back in 2018.
As you can probably see, almost the same concept is present in all places, irrespective of the type of biometrics you are using. But to give you a brief summary of how things work, let’s have a look.
- Whenever you are using biometric access control, it will be using, or depending on, specific biological data, such as fingerprints.
- A database is present within the device within which all the biometrics data are stored and can be retrieved when necessary.
- Whenever an individual accesses the control systems, their biometrics will be scanned.
- If the biological data of that individual person is on record, then that person should have no problem getting access.
- If the biological data of that person has been removed from the database or is not present in it, then access will be denied.
In general, biometric security measures are always better than conventional ones because they add an extra level of protection and take the security system up a notch. When you have normal access control – there are passwords and keypads – with time, someone might lose their keycard, or there is always the risk of a keycard being stolen or a password being guessed. Moreover, when keypads are frequently used, the numbers fade, often giving away the code to hackers. So, there is a slim possibility of a breach in the security system. However, it is significantly harder to breach a system when biometrics are involved.
Biological data cannot be guessed or mimicked. Even a lucky guess can’t get you to pass the system – you literally need the person whose biological data has been used to actually get past the system. Hence, biometric security systems are way more secure and difficult to get through.