Biometrics is now widely used in many walks of life. You may have only noticed it in use if you have entered another country or returned home, but there are many more applications for it than supporting a country's passport control system. The term biometrics covers a large number of different human characteristics which are recorded as simple sets of data. As such, its applications are still being worked out and there may be many ways it is used in the future which have yet to be thought of. What are the common ways in which biometric data is being used right now?
One of the most frequently sought after applications for biometric technology lies with access control systems. All sorts of biometric measurement devices are used in conjunction with pre-existing technologies, such as intercom systems, to provide greater levels of security in public buildings and places of work. Everything from retinal eye scans to face recognition systems are in use right around the world today. In some high-security places, it may even be necessary to have a sample of your DNA taken in order to prove your identity at a later date.
SIM Card Security
All over the world, SIM card fraud is a big issue for mobile phone operators. One of the ways telecommunications companies in places like Nigeria and Thailand have fought back against this sort of fraud is to introduce biometric data into their customer's SIMs. Mostly, this comes down to scanning fingerprints, something that is now mandatory in countries such as India where you must prove your identity to purchase a new SIM.
Health Care Provision
In the past, your name and date of birth were often the only ways in which a health care provider, such as a hospital, would check your identity. These days, biometrics are being used more and more, especially in the Western world, to confirm the identity of individual patients. The aim is to reduce the number of inappropriate medical procedures being given to people who have not been identified correctly.
Biometric scans are now commonplace on smartphones as well as laptop PCs to augment password protection. Face recognition, as well as thumbprint scans, have become the norm in recent years to prevent unwarranted access to data. By locking a device according to the personal ID of an individual, it becomes much harder for criminals to engage in activities such as identity theft, for example.