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Whither Biometrics?


Lynette I. Millett, Senior Program Officer (Study Director)
Kristen Batch, Associate Program Officer (until September 2008)
Eric Whitaker, Senior Program Assistant

Project Information


2010_biometricsbrochureBiometric Recognition: Challenge and Opportunities Brochure is an eight page document that summarizes key points and highlights principles found in the full publication.

Biometric Recognition: Challenges and Opportunities presents a broad and comprehensive assessment of biometric recognition systems -- articulating design and operational considerations as well as outlining a research agenda to bolster the scientific and engineering underpinnings of these systems. The report does not assess individual agencies or programs and is technology-agnostic as much as possible. Instead it focuses on systems-level considerations and design challenges related to uncertainty, variability, scale, and context-sensitivity. Social, cultural, and legal issues are also considered.  The report offers a set of principles that the committee urges any developers or users of biometric recognition technologies to embrace and frames a set of research issues.  

 Summary of a Workshop on the Technology, Policy, and Cultural Dimensions of Biometric Systems This report provides a summary of discussions by panelists and participants at a public workshop organized by CSTB's Whither Biometrics Committee and held on March 15-16, 2005.


Samples of Media Coverage

National Academies Press Release September 24, 2010

The Economist The Difference Engine: Dubious Security October 10, 2010
Government Computer News Just how reliable are biometrics? September 29, 2010
USA Today Report questions biometric technologies in fighting crime September 28, 2010
Discover Magazine (blog) The Fundamental Problems of Minority Report-style Biometrics September 28, 2010
Popular Science Biometric Technologies are 'Inherently Fallible,' says U.S. Report September 27, 2010

Related Publications from Other CSTB Projects

Who Goes There? Authentication Through The Lens of Privacy (CSTB, 2003)
Information Technology for Counterterrorism: Immediate Actions and Future Possibilities (CSTB, 2003)
IDs -- Not That Easy: Questions About Nationwide Identity Systems (CSTB, 2002)
Cybersecurity Today and Tomorrow: Pay Now or Pay Later (CSTB, 2002)
Information Technology Research, Innovation, and E-Government (CSTB, 2002)
Embedded, Everywhere (CSTB, 2001)
Trust in Cyberspace (CSTB, 1999)