7 Nov 2006 AntiMatter   » (Observer)

Implementation of Biometric based authentication technology has always been a holy grail for Transaction Processing giants like NCR and Diebold,



but they have not been able to put the technology around for masses. A research [1] conducted by NCR for the usability of Biometric ATMs has revealed that implementation of such a technology would introduce following non-trivial issues: (1) Acceptence of biometric technology (over PIN) by the customers. (2) Implementation of effective enrollment process. (3) Vulnerability of the biometric devices used.

The above results were concluded from the factors like Failure to Enroll, Failure to Acquire, False Accept Rate and False Reject Rate. While NCR has high concerns over the introduction of biometric technology in ATMs, it recognises the fact that users are more than happy to access their accounts through biometric means of authentication[2].

The architecture of the Linux-based Biometric ATMs running at Tameer Microfinance Bank deals with the above mentioned issues with a very proactive and preemptive fault tolerance approach. The technology under discussion has been set up for the under-previleged lot of the society; people who could hardly write their own names. It has taken some time to educate these people about the new technology, but the realisation of the fact of being previleged is creating a wave of curiosity and enthusiasm in their lives. NCR conducted its reasearch on the well educated and selected users and were not comfortable with the consequences of this technology. However, in this case, real time analysis of the key factors like Failure to Enroll, Failure to Acquire, False Accept Rate and False Reject Rate shows that even the most common and simple users, with unequivocal fingerprint orientation, are quite comfortable to use this technology.

[1] Usability of large scale public systems: Usability and biometric verification at the ATM interface; Lynne Coventry, Antonella De Angeli, Graham Johnson, April 2003, Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on Human factors in computing systems, ACM Press.

[2]Westin, A. Biometrics in the mainstream: What does the U.S. public think. Privacy and American Business Newsletter, 9,8, December 2002.

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