Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Biometric ATM needs your 'finger vein' for cash

George Webster
CNN

The digit-scanning ATM, introduced in the Polish capital of Warsaw, runs on the latest in "finger vein" technology -- an authentication system developed by Japanese tech giant Hitachi.

The company says that an infrared light is passed through the finger to detect a unique pattern of micro-veins beneath the surface - which is then matched with a pre-registered profile to verify an individual's identity.

"This is a substantially more reliable technique than using fingerprints," Peter Jones, Hitachi's head of security and solutions in Europe, told CNN.

"Our tests indicate there is a one in a million false acceptance rate -- that's as good as iris scanning, which is generally regarded as the most secure method."

Unlike fingerprints, which leave a trace and can be potentially reproduced, finger veins are impossible to replicate, according to Jones, because they are beneath the surface of the skin.

"And before you ask, no -- it doesn't work with fingers that have been chopped off," he added.
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