March 4, 2008 As security of personal information becomes more important, new technologies are emerging in the fight for privacy protection, fraud prevention and increased security. One of these is vein pattern recognition, and biometric company Snowflake Technologies has just released a prototype identity verification system based on this technology.
The system uses vein pattern recognition (or VPR), whereby an individual is identified by their unique vein pattern. The company took its name, “Snowflake” from the fact that like snowflakes, no two vein patterns are ever the same. Users are registered on the system by a fast and simple scan of their subcutaneous vein patterns in one of their hands. To gain access to the system the user then holds their hand in place for a second to verify identity.
Snowflake Technologies believes VPR has significant advantages over other biometric technologies such as fingerprinting and iris scans. One of the key factors is that vein patterns are fast to process and have a false acceptance and rejection rate less than .01%. The company also claims VPR is easy to use, very difficult to defraud and is hygienic because the user doesn’t need to actually touch anything to achieve scanning and recognition.
Sci-fi movies have created the illusion of this technique for decades and applications for this type of system are wide ranging - from military and healthcare to building access for businesses, home security or banking solutions which do away with PINS and photo ID. Other possible applications include time, attendance and transaction recording and audit trail creation. Snowflake plans to deliver its solution to Fortune 500 companies and other enterprises possessing a need to take individual accountability to the next level. Snowflake says the prototype is the next-to-last step on the path toward full commercialization and the company intends to have the system market ready by the end of 2008.