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The Biometric Citizen

Sujan Parthasaradhi, Director of Biometric Applications, HID Global, APAC | July 25, 2016
Biometrics is becoming more familiar in the commercial marketplace, but it has a relatively long history of use by governments worldwide

When surface fingerprint information is combined with subsurface fingerprint information and reassembled in an intelligent and integrated manner, the results are more consistent, inclusive and tamper-resistant.

Benefit Disbursement with Biometric Verification

Governments around the world provide direct benefits to citizens, such as education, healthcare, pension schemes, employment, food rations and financial inclusion. How can program administrators be certain that these goods and services are reaching the intended recipients? What percentage of goods is being diverted to enrich corrupt officials? Are pension benefits being paid out after the death of the intended recipient? Administrators must be able to know who is receiving the goods and services - and only biometrics can verify the identity of recipients with certainty.

In India, some of the largest social welfare programs suffered because of ineligible beneficiaries receiving payments and corrupt officials taking a cut of or delaying payments meant for the needy. Combining the country's biometric identification system, which currently covers 19 million villagers, with the $5.5 billion National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, corruption and inaccuracies are greatly reduced and the funds can then reach the intended recipients sooner.

Managing Borders with Biometrics

The case for using biometrics at international borders is well-established. Some border crossings are so busy, however, that it might seem that moving people through quickly is a competing priority. Hong Kong Immigration solved that problem by deploying multispectral fingerprint biometrics. The technology reliably authenticates 250,000-400,000 visitors every day while alleviating long processing delays and preventing spoof attacks. It's an extraordinary achievement that's becoming commonplace in other sectors.

In Thailand, police is implementing facial recognition at all border checkpoints. The instalment will not only speed up the immigration screening process, but also prevent transnational crimes.

The operational conditions and heavy-duty cycles required by many e-border applications demand a sensor that is robust, durable, and tamper-resistant. The devices and software selected must be capable of successfully collecting a usable image under a wide variety of environmental and human conditions.

Focusing on Identity

Identity is a perennial social and political issue. By binding rights and privileges to specific individuals, biometrics enables a renewed focus on the protection of identity, rights, privileges and privacy. We all have only one true identity, and this identity must be protected in a sensible, balanced and efficient way. With biometrics, governments can be assured who
is claiming rights and privileges.


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