Live from CES: Data Security in Your Blood

DiscoblogBy Tyghe TrimbleJan 10, 2008 1:12 AM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Science fiction might make eye scanners out to be the security system of the future, but current eye-scanning technology is extremely pricey and is seen by many as an invasive version of security. (Really, who wants lasers in their eyes?) That’s probably why fingerprint systems have popped up as the first industry winner in biometric personal-security systems, a technology that is built into a number of computers on the market now. Such security is used as an access point to operating systems or particularly sensitive files. But if you have bank statements and other extremely sensitive personal information on your computer, the risk of a security breach is uncomfortably high, as it is not unimaginable for some nosy soul to obtain fingerprints using century-old forensic techniques and a simple latex mold. That’s why scanning patterns of veins is a smart alternative biometric technology. Fujitsu is taking vein-scanning technology to the market, coming out with a product, revealed at CES, that focuses on the complex array of veins in the palm. In order to gain access to an electronic device or a building, you hold up your palm in front of the device (for now, it must be a few inches away) of the scanner and it reads your unique vein layout with the blood flowing through the palm, giving you entry. (No, horror/sci-fi fans, you cannot chop an arm off and use another’s lifeless limb. And what kind of sicko would even think of something like that.) Fujitsu plans to have a pricey industrial scanner (It will probably be “over $2,000”) set in a large metal box that is designed for building entry and they have a roughly 1.5 inch-by-1.5 inch personal palm scanner built into a mouse, soon to sell for roughly $400.

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2023 Kalmbach Media Co.