How Useful Are Biometric ID cards?


Biometric ID cards have extensive value for businesses, but also carry some drawbacks. Cards that employ biometric technology primarily focus on identifying people through their physical features, from hand prints to eye and facial recognition. Biometric cards have become a crucial part of airport security and other institutions, and have also developed to the point that they are difficult to impossible to forge. Other benefits include their long term security, and ability to reduce human error. However, biometric cards can also cause problems if the technology is flawed, while raising personal data issues. Some of the benefits and disadvantages of biometric ID cards can be found below:

Key Benefits

1 – Enhanced Security

Biometric IDs are much more secure than traditional ID cards or signatures. The unique information stored on biometric IDs cannot be copied in the same way as a signature or password, and will add significantly more peace of mind for businesses. The risk of fraud is also lowered, while businesses are able to better track employees.

2 – Resolving Disputes

A biometric ID check can help investigators to resolve any serious security breaches that may involve employees. By checking biometric records, it is possible to identify who was responsible for a theft or other incident. The potential for investigators to identify culprits in this way means that staff are much less likely to consider defrauding companies.

3 – Cuts Down on Storage

Other security measures generate significant amounts of encrypted data on passwords, additional information, and security codes, as well as generating higher costs for replacement cards. A biometric card can combine multiple security features, and acts as a one step solution to improving security.

4 – Wide Range of Uses

Biometric IDs are ideal for airport security checks, and can also be used as part of sensitive company security systems. While the basic technology remains the same, cards can be tailored to the specific needs of a business, with agreements made on how and why certain information is stored, and what type of biometrics will be used, from face to hand recognition.


5 – Errors

Biometric technology is still developing, and it is possible for errors to occur. A person with a cold may not be able to correctly match their voice to a recognition system, while any accidents might prevent an employee for using hand and face scanning software.

6 – Potential Risks

Voice recognition cards can be made vulnerable to voice matching and recording. Having a multiple set of security options can, however, reduce the risk of this occurring.

7 – Protected Data

Many employees may not feel comfortable about using biometric cards. Less intrusive forms of biometrics such as hand scanning or voice recognition might be preferable in this context to retina scanning, or more extreme forms like DNA scanning. Sensitivity over this data also means that more investment might need to be made in protecting losses, and for disposing of information when an employee leaves a company.

Taken together, the advantages of biometric ID cards arguably outweigh some of their practical and security issues. While biometrics is still a work in progress, businesses should consider trialing cards.

  • cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo by Kevin Krejci:

Patrick Hegarty is a freelance copywriter, with two years experience writing exclusively for the supply chain industry, he has amassed a wealth of industry related knowledge. Writing every day, he will be breaking news stories and contributing compelling supply chain management stories.

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