One of the many priorities of a manager is to secure sensitive areas within their organization. Over the years, businesses have started using different types of access control solutions that require the person seeking access to perform a specific activity (swipe their card or get their fingerprints/retina scanned). Once the activity is performed, the system scans its records. If a match is found, the person is granted access. One of the most popular types of access control solutions is fingerprint scanning.

Fingerprint scanners: An introduction

Fingerprint scanners for businesses work by analyzing the image of the ridges and valleys that make up a fingerprint. Once the person seeking access, places their thumb on the scanner, the capacitors collect information about the fingerprints. After the required data is collected, the system compares the attributes of the fingerprint with its records. The person is provided access only if a match is found.

Biometric finger scanners are more effective and advanced than optical scanners. Many people think that they can trick the system by using prosthetics. What they don’t know is that different materials record different changes in the capacitor’s charge. Furthermore, the results can’t be replicated with an image, which makes fingerprint scanners one of the most reliable access control solutions.

Why fingerprint authentication?

Fingerprint scanning is steadily replacing conventional scanning methods all over the world. Fingerprint scanners are easier to work with, inexpensive, and portable, making them a perfect solution for growing businesses.

Though different types of biometric technologies such as iris/retinal scans and vein recognition are available, it has been observed that several employees are highly conscious using these authentication technologies as they have to sport a specific posture. Getting their fingerprint authenticated, on the other hand, is less time consuming and they don’t have to sport a particular posture.

In addition to these advantages, some other fingerprint scanner benefits are:

  1. ReliabilityNo two fingerprints have the same dermal ridge patterns, which means replicating the attributes of a particular fingerprint is next to impossible. Fingerprint authentication can help address problems such as buddy punching and time theft.

    Because employees cannot replicate the fingerprints of their co-workers, your managers and co-workers get accurate reports related to attendance, which helps them make informed and better decisions. Secondly, a person’s fingerprint does not change with age or gets affected by any disease, which means you won’t have to invest time and efforts to tweak the system at regular intervals. Additionally, biometric templates occupy very less space, which means you won’t have to invest in expensive storage devices.

  2. Enhanced employee accountabilityEarlier manual systems were used for time management. These systems were highly inefficient and in many cases were unable to capture important information. Fingerprint authentication addresses this problem. Data collected by fingerprint scanners is stored in a central repository, helping create an audit trail for time and attendance records.

    When your managers are in the know regarding which employee from their team has been consistently reporting late to work or the team members who take frequent or extended breaks, employees become conscious, which helps deter unproductive behaviours.

  3. Help improve employee moraleData from fingerprint scanners can help your managers identify employees who go above and beyond what’s required and dedicate extra hours to work consistently. Rewarding hardworking employees improve their morale, motivating them to work even harder. And it’s always acknowledged that improved employee morale can do wonders for their productivity.
  4. Enhanced security many people wrongly believe that fingerprint scanners store fingerprints as images, which can result in data theft in the event of a data breach. Fingerprint scanners use complex encryption algorithms to generate a template, which is just a mathematical representation of the scanned fingerprint.

    Even if a hacker gets hold of this sequence, recreating the exact image of the fingerprint is next to impossible. Further, the template can only be used by the system to perform a match or generate facts related to the fingerprint scanned. These safeguards make fingerprint scanners one of the safest and most effective access control systems.

  5. Authentication is simple and less time consuming Unlike retinal scanners and vein recognition systems that might take several seconds to complete a scan, fingerprint scanners usually do not take more than a second (or at the most a few seconds) to complete a scan.

    The actual time will depend on many factors such as fingertip surface quality and the type of scanner used. People with worn off fingertips, for instance, may have to present their finger multiple times for authentication. Similarly, optical sensors may have a hard time scanning dirty fingers, and the person may have to present their finger multiple times for scanning. When using capacitive scanners, people with clean but wet fingers may have to try multiple times to get the required permissions finally.

  6. Cost benefitsFingerprint scanners are easy to configure and operate, which means you won’t have to provide any specialized training to your team. Most systems include a simple fingerprint scanner and software. You do not have to reprogram badges, maintain inventory or assign employee passcodes. Maintenance too is a breeze as most upgrades come in the form of software-based upgrades. Given that operating and maintaining the system is less time consuming and effort intensive, your IT teams will save precious man-hours that can be invested in more productive activities.

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