Feeds

Cry to beat iris scanners

Fluttering your eyelashes will help too

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Build a business case: developing custom apps

An MP who volunteered to take part in the UK ID card trials says the iris scanner used is uncomfortable and made his eyes water.

Poor chap, you're probably thinking, but not exactly a tragedy. However, this isn't just a whinge. The water in his eyes actually stopped the scanner from working, and it seems long eyelashes and hard contact lenses could fox it too.

So we're going to have a system that is derailed by a few tears and fluttering eyelashes?

Roland Sables, the man in charge of the trial, said that he was expecting a failure rate of about seven per cent. Most of these failures, he argued, would be caused by problems with camera positioning, although others "are due to eye malformations, watery eyes and long eyelashes in a small percentage [of cases]".

Sables said that so far the iris scanner had failed to match people with their details in just four per cent of cases. Scale that up to the UK population and you've got nearly 2.5m people who won't be correctly identified.

Bob Russell, a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee, and the man with the rheumy eyes, speculated that the iris scanner could also cause problems for people who were particularly photo sensitive, or suffered from epilepsy.

John Denham, the Home Affairs Select Committee chairman, who was also visiting the pilot registration centre, said that while the overall registration process was very simple, there were some technology issues that needed to be addressed.

He pointed out that people with disabilities would have difficulty moving into the right position to be scanned. "Some of the crucial issues about the technology will be better informed at the end of the trial," he added. reg;

Related stories

Everything you never wanted to know about the UK ID card
Glitches in ID card kit frustrate Blunkett's pod people
Biometric recognition gets right in your face
ID cards to use 'key database' of personal info
10 years jail for false ID - Blunkett PR deploys rattle of shackles
UK public wants ID cards, and thinks we'll screw up the IT

A new approach to endpoint data protection

More from The Register

next story
Amazon says Hachette should lower ebook prices, pay authors more
Oh yeah ... and a 30% cut for Amazon to seal the deal
Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate reality' story to be made into TV series
Amazon Studios, Ridley Scott firm to produce The Man in the High Castle
Nintend-OH NO! Sorry, Mario – your profits are in another castle
Red-hatted mascot, red-colored logo, red-stained finance books
Sonos AXES support for Apple's iOS4 and 5
Want to use your iThing? You can't - it's too old
Joe Average isn't worth $10 a year to Mark Zuckerberg
The Social Network deflates the PC resurgence with mobile-only usage prediction
Feel free to BONK on the TUBE, says Transport for London
Plus: Almost NOBODY uses pay-by-bonk on buses - Visa
Twitch rich as Google flicks $1bn hitch switch, claims snitch
Gameplay streaming biz and search king refuse to deny fresh gobble rumors
Stick a 4K in them: Super high-res TVs are DONE
4,000 pixels is niche now... Don't say we didn't warn you
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?