Biometrics Role in Digital Security

RapidVPN/ February 28, 2019/ Blog/

Biometrics – the most important metrics related to human features. Nowadays, biometrics entered the world of technology and represents it’s cutting edge. Almost everybody heard of it – because they are everywhere, including our laptops, desktop computers, smartphones.

Biometrics can include a number of things, such as – fingerprints scanners, recognition of eye irises, behavioral characteristics. Their most important features are that those data are unique and permanent. If you think about it – most of us are actually using biometrics almost every day: every time when you unlock your smartphone with a facial or fingerprint recognition when you ask you personal smartphone assistant for a weather report –  you’re using biometrics. In order to understand different types of biometrics, we must first list the most common ones.

Fingerprint scanner

Incorporated into almost every new smartphone or laptop – you use your fingerprint as a password to unlock the screen. It’s based on the unique whorls and lines on your finger.

Face recognition

As with fingerprint scanner, face recognition is part of almost every new smartphone or laptop. It measures the unique features of a human’s face.

Voice recognition

It measures the sound patterns of your voice when you speak to a device. It’s part of smartphone features – like your personal assistant or Amazon’s Alexa.

Iris recognition

It recognizes the unique patterns of human’s iris. It’s widely used in security applications.

Behavior characteristics

The most important part of biometrics nowadays. Other features may be under the danger of hacker attacks, but this one proved the most successful and the strongest one. It follows the way in which a person interacts with a system – keystrokes, handwriting, the movements which you use when you use a mouse.

Once the biometric data is collected, it’s stored to be accessed later on for comparison with “live” information. The biometric system is composed of three components:

  • sensor – reads and records your biometric information;
  • computer – storing the information for comparison;
  • software – anything that connects the computer to the sensor.

One of the most important characteristics of biometric data is that it removes the necessity of remembering a huge number of passwords and is above all the secure way to access your devices.

However, one may know that there are privacy concerns when it comes to biometrics:

Any collection of data of biometrics can sooner or later get hacked, but the biometrics work in a way to be secured on the strongest level;

The data that is once stored in the biometric database can’t be changed and once it’s been put in danger – it may no longer be under your control;

Some pieces of the identity of a human being can be duplicated and be used in order to hack into your devices.

 In order to prevent any misfortunes that may happen there are some security measures that one can use such as using strong passwords or keeping the software current in order to prevent and reduce the attacks on the vulnerable system once it’s out of date.

Companies and agencies incorporate many behavior sensors into the biometrics in order to be more effective, thus we’ve seen the measurement of person’s keystrokes, mouse movements, or the way they scroll or swipe through the field. By comprehending how someone works or acts on a network, device or when using an application – many mistakes and misfortunes may be prevented. People should also be aware of who they allow collecting their biometric data.

On the other hand, biometrics evolve and the branch is expanding. Not only that it will track a person’s way of behavior as the latest advance, but it can also, for example, trace your – heartbeat, or blood flow directly beneath your skin. The researchers claim that it can work on your smartphone, smartwatch or laptop. It particularly benefits in the areas of health and fitness issues.

Biometrics work in favor of personalized advertising also or for example – demographics tracking. Biometrics technology already enters a number of consumer-based industries. It can help establish markets.

There are a number of advantages of using biometrics in cybersecurity, first and foremost being the uniqueness of the signature. As we all know – there are no two same fingerprints and above all – they are hard to forge. Also, biometrics are extremely convenient for people who use them. Previously, people used to memorize lists of passwords – nowadays it’s as simple as providing a smile and entering your bank account. An additional benefit includes saving millions of dollars for the companies – because they can avoid resetting passwords and its costs and the management of biometric systems may be less expensive.

One must be aware of the weakness of biometrics – the system itself is not completely perfect.

The first and foremost threat include modification of a person’s traits, due to health issues or age or any other factor. Once your biometrics are settled – there is no way of changing them or modify them and this can make a huge problem in the future.

Resets are not only hard to be done but also almost impossible – you can change your stolen password and regain access over a certain device, but you can’t access the device which logs in with biometric currencies once it’s got stolen – the device will be fooled that it’s actually you using it!

Also, biometrics are collected and stored on databases. But as we already know, databases are not completely secure nor perfect. A brute hacking attempt can break the system and the hacker will have access to millions of accounts!

However, one must notice and know that biometrics has started and will play the most important part of cybersecurity in the future. They are the latest tool we should use to solidify our collective security. In combination with other cybersecurity systems – it may not be foolproof – but it can be strong enough to offer the best possible protection.