Use a new smartphone with a fingerprint scanner and it’s hard to imagine one without. Unlocking an iPhone or Samsung Galaxy takes less than a second; just press your thumb against the home button and you’re in. Compared to the old method there’s just no contest – and that’s without the added security benefits for mobile banking and shopping. That’s part of why fingerprint scanners are fast becoming a standard feature, even in budget smartphones.
That’s just one example of how biometrics – the practice of using biological (anatomical and physiological) or behavioral characteristics for automated recognition and verification – is a win-win. Not only does biometrics make the process of identifying and authenticating more secure, it also makes it faster, easier, and more convenient. Only you have the fingerprint (or vocal tract, DNA, or facial characteristics) to unlock the biometrics lock, and there’s no need to remember a password, enter a PIN, or bring along a keycard. You, yourself, are the key.