As companies face increasing challenges to manage tangible and intangible assets, security protocols are of considerable importance. This is no more so than in the case of digital information flow. Whilst password access is the traditional means of restricting access, some organizations have fallen foul to vicious attacks perpetrated by cyber criminals who use a combination of sophisticated hacking, phishing and key logging techniques to comprise organizational systems. Biometric software is gaining popularity as a solution to safeguard systems to a higher degree than standard data access.
What are biometric systems? These systems control access by way of matching the behavioral and physiological characteristics of an individual to centrally stored and maintained database information. The use of this technology can include fingerprint reading, iris scanning, facial recognition or voice analysis. In the past, this use of this technology was assumed to only be available to high grade military or security based organizations. Now, however, the decrease in cost has seen everyday businesses begin to incorporate the benefits of this software.
Biometric systems can improve operational efficiency by eliminating arduous administrative processes associated with maintaining access cards, passwords and pin numbers. For the sake of cross departmental integration, the ability to track, monitor and report on attendance levels, equipment access and sensitive data provides an efficient way to maintain control of essential system processes.
As an adjunct to conventional password access, organizations that want to ramp up security can incorporate a combination of biometric and digital access procedures. This has become the preferred solution in some industries such as health providers who have been subject to malicious attacks on commercial sensitive information such as patient records and insurance details. Legislation now requires that companies embrace this type of solution to minimize business disruption and to protect patients from identity theft.
There are several types of commercial solutions that incorporate biometric processes. When selecting a solution it is important to establish a mandate according to organizational requirements. Whilst feature control is traditionally given the most attention, end user behavior is equally important. It is important to investigate all the options before selecting a system to match the goals and objectives of the organization.