Biometric systems also face cultural challenges: aside from technical hurdles, opinions vary on what methods are invasive

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Author: Alice Lipowicz
Date: June 12, 2006
From: Government Computer News(Vol. 25, Issue 15)
Publisher: 1105 Media, Inc.
Document Type: Article
Length: 689 words
Lexile Measure: 1670L

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FOR CLAUDIO CASUCCIO, director of General Dynamics Corp.'s business development unit in Rome, posing for an identification card photograph is not worrisome. But ask him to offer his finger or palm for a biometric vein scan, and he won't be as accommodating.

"That's looking inside your body," Casuccio said. "It is very invasive, in my opinion."

Casuccio's view underscores the cultural differences that can arise as companies take their biometric solutions around the globe.

In Japan, for instance, internal vein pattern scans of fingers and palms are becoming popular for identity management. Electronics giants Fujitsu Ltd. and Hitachi Ltd. are promoting the technology. On May 11, the University of Tokyo Hospital announced it had adopted Fujitsu's palm vein authentication technology for its ID cards and discarded its fingerprint-based system.

Advocates of vein scanning say it avoids the perceived law enforcement stigma of fingerprinting and is highly accurate and resistant to tampering. But the technology has yet to proliferate beyond Japan.

Many governments around the world are using smart cards with embedded biometrics...

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A149508571