Monday, February 2, 2009

Sony and Biometrics? Mofira

Engadget reports that Sony announced a finger vein biometric system that it calls "mofira". The Akihibaranews post about it describes it as a "The user-friendly technology offers quick response and high accuracy and comes in a compact size for mounting on mobile devices such as a personal computer or mobile phone.". The technology's claimed .1% false rejection rate, and .0001% false acceptance rate places it closer to an iris reader under ideal conditions, and far beyond most normal face, fingerprint, or hand geometry scanners.

The most interesting part isn't the capability of the technology though - what should catch our attention is that Sony is a major manufacturer of commodity consumer devices, including a wide range of cell phones and laptops, meaning that we might see it used in a variety of places. While Lenovo has used fingerprint scanners for some time on their corporate laptops, biometric authentication has not been widely adopted elsewhere. A low false rejection rate technology from a major consumer products company could change that.

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