Biometrics Industry News Roundup: Controlling Access, Protecting Borders and Getting Ready For ISC West

March 30, 2014 – by Peter B. Counter     

The week most recently past was filled with physical access and border control news and there is no surprise as to why: in mere days the biometrics industry will have it gaze focused on Las Vegas, Nevada for this year’s ISC West conference and exhibition.

Physical access control is an exciting area of application for biometrics, and one that its welcoming to just about every strong authentication mode out there. A great example of this flexibility can be illustrated with a look at Morpho (Safran)’s product lineup for ISC West, which highlights not only the various different biometric modes that can offer physical security, but also a number of ways each type of recognition technology can lend its strengths.

Another great place to look for examples of versatility in Las Vegas this week will be HID Global’s booth, which in addition to showcasing the company’s Bluetooth LE and NFC for mobile access, and its new iCLASS SE Encoder, will also be demonstrating the multispectral fingerprint technology available through its newest acquisition: Lumidigm.

Fujitsu will also have a presence at ISC West this coming week, showing off the physical access capabilities of what seems  the company’s biometric of choice: palm vein imaging. The company’s much touted PalmSecure technology was recently chosen by a new global integrator, AUTEC GmbH. The new Fujitsu partner has a new physical access system – called XMP-PalmCom – that uses components from Fujitsu’s PalmEntry solution.

Despite all of the many innovative and flexible ways that biometrics can be applied to physical access, there still are some major barriers of adoption when it comes to taking the leap to a next generation security system. Zwipe, who appointed a new North American sales director this past week has a solution that attacks one of these biggest obstacles head-on.

The Zwipe biometric access card can provide a biometric upgrade to a card-based security system without the addition of infrastructure, reducing deployment costs and the time and work involved in replacing established infrastructure. The solution has an on-card fingerprint sensor that when receiving a positive match activates the contactless signal that will allow access through any existing ISO 14443 smart card readers.

An extremely large aspect of physical access control is border management, and with the Malaysian flight 370 disappearance still fresh, as well as last month’s various reports of automated border control market growth, the last week of March saw its share of news in this arena.

The IBIA released a report on the heels of it’s connect:ID event in Washington, calling attention to the unfulfilled mandate of biometric exit in the United States. Meanwhile Gemalto launched a new border management solution set to make the systems run smoother and with greater effectiveness.

Vision-Box took a different stance, still looking forward and preaching in favor of biometrics at the airport. The company has put forth the idea that biometrics should be taken and accepted at every airport touch point, effectively making sure everyone who has entered the airport passes all of the various necessary steps, and allowing verified and trusted identities to experienced streamlined security.

Though Vision-Box has a particularly passenger-focused approach to border control, the effect is the same as the call from the IBIA and Gemalto’s newest solution: biometrics and border control need to further entwine themselves for the sake of national security and personal sanity.

Of course, no week in biometrics is fully focused on a single topic. Fingerprint Cards AB announced this week that it has received a touch sensor order worth SEK 30 million from Hardware & Software Technologies Co. Ltd, its distributor in China and Taiwan, while BIO-key International announced that this coming Tuesday it will be broadcasting its Q4 2013 financial earnings live over the Internet.

Now, if you thought this week was filled with physical access control news, just wait until you see what’s in store for April, starting off with ISC West ground floor coverage and a number of exclusive interviews on the subject. Be sure to follow findBIOMETRICS on Twitter so that you don;t miss a beat.