What is biometrics and how it improves cybersecurity

On the latest smartphones we find fingerprint readers but there are also other biometric sensors that we will soon use on our devices

Passwords, two-step verification or access codes. As you may have guessed, we are talking about useful tools to keep safe all our information on the Web. All these systems nowadays have been surpassed, but also supported, by the so-called biometric sensors.

The term biometrics in computer science refers to a system capable of recognizing and identifying an individual based on certain physiological characteristics. These are unique personal aspects such as iris, fingerprints, retina, etc. Therefore, biometric data is highly confidential information that a machine identifies to allow access or not to an account, or device, for a user. In order to analyze this data, it is necessary to have biometric sensors. Many of these sensors are now also present in everyday objects. Think for example of the fingerprint scanner that we find in the latest smartphones.

Voice Recognition

The system of recognizing a person's biometric information is also called AIDC (Automatic Identification and Data Capture). At the moment, as already pointed out, the most used biometric sensors are the retina, iris and fingerprints, but soon on several devices we will find scanners able to recognize us based on our voice, our signature or, more generally, based on our handwriting. In the next smartphones and notebooks, biometric sensors will be increasingly used and we will find more than one. This is because cybersecurity is becoming a key feature for devices and using PINs or passwords alone is no longer enough. At the moment there are three sectors where the use of biometric readers is essential: banks, insurance companies and enterprises (especially in telecommunication ones).

Fingerprint sensor

Nowadays fingerprint scanner has become trendy on smartphones. This makes accessing the screen and apps much more secure than using PINs or other unlocking methods. However, it must be said that there are different biometric fingerprint readers, and not all of them are the same. The most common ones are those with a touch sensor, usually located at the back of the smartphone. On many phones, the fingerprint reader is clickable and allows you to quickly open an app or the camera. Soon, these sensors will catch on in laptop touchpads as well.