Fujitsu's biometric scanner reads palms

Fujitsu's biometric scanner reads palms

Summary: CeBIT: Never mind fingerprint and iris recognition. In the future we could be identifying ourselves with the veins in our hands

TOPICS: Emerging Tech

Cross Fujitsu's palm with silver and you'll get a biometric scanner — pictured in our CeBIT 2005 gallery — that identifies people by looking at the veins in the hands.

The infrared scanner, the Contactless Palm Vein Authentication System, was on show at CeBIT on Friday. It can reads palms from a short distance with few restrictions on hand positioning within certain limits — something Fujitsu says previous scanners have struggled with.

Fujitsu explained on Friday that vein patterns are difficult to forge, and claimed that the scanner was more hygienic than other scanners because it requires no physical contact to read palms.

It works using infrared light to scan for haemoglobin, which provides oxygen to cells in the body. Reduced haemoglobin absorbs near-infrared rays, so on the image it shows up as black with the rest of the hand coloured white.

The scanner took two years to develop. Japanese biometric engineers said the hardest part was getting the scanner to read veins that constantly move and change shape. The system had a false rejection rate of one percent and a false acceptance rate of 0.5 percent when tested on 700 people aged from 10 to 70 years-old.

For a look at the fun side of CeBIT, check out our CeBIT Digital Living special. Or visit ZDNet UK's CeBIT Toolkit for more enterprise technology stories and pictures from the show floor.

Topic: Emerging Tech

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  • But does it tell your fortune??
  • 0.5% is pretty good and not many access controls will allow you 2000 attempts before locking you out!
    Also, I understand that the near infra-red scanner actually detects the de-oxygenated blood below the surface of the skin - and so it is not significantly affected by the temperature of the hand (there is a test on the Fujitsu web page). I guess you will alos need a live hand = so amputations is not an option. Since a person's veins are formed in the womb and do not change thereafter - it also solves the problem of children and biometrics