Fujitsu develops a new smartphone with iris recognition, and the technology is soon to be available in the United States.
Paynter-Krigman Professor in Engineering Science Stephanie Schuckers, Director, Center for Identification Technology Research (CITeR), said the iris recognition systems in the Fujitsu smartphone are giving people more options to protect their electronic devices.
Schuckers said the type of biometrics people choose depends on more than how well the system differentiates between individuals. The application, convenience, price and cultural expectations related to each system can influence personal preference.
Iris recognition systems use near-infrared lights to analyze the pattern of the muscles in the iris, not the color of the iris. Schuckers said near-infrared lights are used in many technologies, including security systems, and are not dangerous to the user in this application.
"Iris recognition is very high quality like a fingerprint, but no biometric--an iris or a fingerprint-is perfect," she said.
Some iris recognition systems may be vulnerable to printed photos of eyes or patterned contact lenses, while other implementations may be programmed to protect against these spoofs. Schuckers urged smartphone users to be aware of the quality of apps and other devices that claim to provide iris recognition.
Schuckers is working with other CITeR researchers to develop methods to protect against biometric spoofing. The organization is funding a competition, the Liveness Detection (LivDet) Competition Series, which asks researchers to provide algorithms that differentiate between data from real and fake irises.