Biometrics offers no guarantees on security

Identity theft still possible despite iris scanning and finger printing...

Identity theft still possible despite iris scanning and finger printing...

Biometric technologies alone cannot prevent identity theft, according to a study. Consultancy firm Lexis Nexis found biometrics, which uses a person's irises, thumbprints, voice and even facial features as unique identifiers, is not enough to protect users' private data. Biometrics will become a secure authenticator when combined with more abstract information, such as an old phone number or mother's maiden name, the report concluded. Identity theft is a growing menace in the US, according to a recent report from the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC said a massive 42 per cent of its 204,000 complaints last year involved stolen identities and up to 750,000 other US citizens will have their identities stolen this year. The crooks need new identities for accessing credit card accounts, securing loans and cashing cheques. Thieves are stealing IDs though various means, such as following an electronic trail from a hacked computer. The internet is an ideal channel for those who wish to create multiple personalities because users can interact without proof of actual real-world identity.