Biometrics and Cybersecurity

Biometrics and Cybersecurity

Biometrics and cybersecurity seem like the ideal combination. For example, if you use your fingerprint to unlock your device, you’re already making use of biometrics. Many people are accustomed to biometrics, even if they don’t realize it.

We offer cybersecurity in Miami, and one of the leading recommendations we make to individuals and businesses is to start using biometrics as an integral part of strengthening their security.

What are Biometrics?

Biometrics uses the measurement of your specific characteristics to identify you. If you’ve ever had your fingerprints taken, this is a form of biometrics. Additional forms of biometrics may include:

  • Facial features
  • Iris patterns

If you use facial recognition on your phone or a fingerprint scan to access your device, this is a form of biometrics that is highly accurate and very difficult to hack. For example, it’s easy to hack into a person’s device if they use a simple password.

However, it’s far more complex to use a person’s unique fingerprint to access their device.

Biometrics are made up of three main types, all of which are being experimented on and used in many applications to some extent, including:

  • Biological, such as your DNA or blood samples.
  • Morphological, which includes things such as your fingerprint or an iris scan.
  • Behavioral, which is the unique way that you create patterns, such as how you speak or even type.

As a cybersecurity company in Miami, morphological biometrics are what we come across in the world of cybersecurity.

How Biometrics and Cybersecurity Intersect

When accessing devices or systems, there is great demand for more security. Passwords are easily stolen, but biometrics are very hard to mimic. We see many high-end companies and financial institutions requiring the use of biometrics.

For example:

  • Citibank uses voice recognition to identify a person
  • Phones may use facial recognition or a fingerprint to access them
  • Automobile makers are considering biometrics to start vehicles and prevent theft

Instead of a passcode, companies are developing solutions that use biometrics as a form of a password. While these features are already in use today, we expect more secure systems to require users to enable biometrics.

Are Biometrics 100% Safe?

No, but it’s close. There's always the chance of a biometric authentication being spoofed or failing. We'll use the iPhone as an example. The device’s facial recognition will use 30,000 points to identify a person’s face, and there’s a one in a million chance that someone else’s face will pass as your own.

Even with this high level of accuracy, the risk of a false positive is too much for some businesses.

Instead, they use traditional security measures and biometrics as a form of multi-factor identification. Algorithms are advancing to help reduce the risk of a hacker tricking a biometric scanner and allowing an unauthorized individual to gain access to devices and systems.

Unfortunately, many businesses and device users are reluctant to use biometrics, even if the practice improves their security greatly. The thought of your iris being scanned or fingerprint data being stored on a device often prevents people from using this highly effective form of security.