Biometric Fingerprint Scanning – What Happens to My Data?

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Biometric Fingerprint Scanning – What Happens to My Data?

Privacy and the access of sensitive information has been highly topical recently particularly in regards to the Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scandal, which has been making headlines worldwide.

As technology progresses, the use of biometric time keeping has become increasingly popular within the workforce as employers move to streamline business procedures. As citizens living and consuming within a technological environment, we are becoming more aware than ever about how data is stored, accessed, and handled, and perhaps even a little suspicious as to how our own data is being used.

Easy-to-use and cost effective – it is clear why many businesses are making the switch to biometric time and attendance systems.  Despite this, a change of any internal procedure can cause concern among staff and with the addition of biometric data it is only natural to have a few questions. Below we have answered a few common queries related to biometric fingerprint scanners and how the information is stored. 

How is the fingerprint data stored?

A common concern of biometric terminal use is whether fingerprints are stored or not, and if access to this data could potentially lead to fraudulent activity. Rather than storing an image of an employee’s fingerprint the data is converted and recorded as a binary file (binary files are usually thought of as being a sequence of bytes, which means the binary digits (bits) grouped in eights). Each time an employee subsequently scans their fingerprint to clock in or out, the information is transferred as an algorithm and compared to the stored binary file. The data recorded in the system cannot be converted into a usable representation of the fingerprint so you can rest assured that the enrolment data will not put your personal details at risk of a breach.

Is it possible to break into the system?

We’ve all seen the films depicting thieves or spies who could seemingly break into rooms by fooling biometric systems. Whilst older systems could – and in some cases – be manipulated, modern biometric systems are able to distinguish between human flesh and other organic or synthetic materials. Modern multispectral imaging also records the structure of the fingerprint, dictating the external ridges. This means that the the internal details are compared to the print itself ensuring a correct matches.

How to get employees onboard with Biometric systems

Whilst you may be sold on the idea of implementing biometric systems into your business, your employees may not be completely comfortable. Keeping staff informed can assist in removing any concerns they may have, along with an explanation on why you intend on implementing the biometric terminals.

The PaysOnline Solution

PaysOnline’s Biometric Time and Attendance solution is easy-to-use and cost effective. With a choice between three different terminals – fingerprint scanner, palm scanner or facial scanner – you’re sure to find a fit for your business.  Request a meeting with one of our specialists to explore the PaysOnline solution.

You can find more information on our Privacy Policy here and our Data Breach Policy here

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