[iwar] Re: thought activation

From: Tony Bartoletti (azb@llnl.gov)
Date: 2001-06-08 18:54:12

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From: Tony Bartoletti <azb@llnl.gov>
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Date: Fri, 08 Jun 2001 18:54:12 -0700
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Subject: [iwar] Re: thought activation
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(Sent again.  I wanted the list to consider this one.)

At 08:34 AM 6/8/01 -0400, you wrote:

>But this is related to a serious concern I have about biometrics.  Let me
>admit from the outset that this may be the result of a lack of understanding
>of the technology on my part.  How do biometric devices deal with normal
>deviations in what they sense and act on?  For instance, how would something
>that reads a fingerprint work if I've cut or burned a finger while cooking
>the previous night?  Or in the case of voice activation, how does it work if
>one has a sore throat one day?

Not very well, I suppose.  Improved techniques employ all sorts of fuzzy 
and statistical measures to produce "templates" that can be reliably 
matched, despite *some* variations in a read.

My issue with biometrics is that, in the zealous desire to find more 
definitive forms of attribution, it is often considered the "final 
word".  I have wondered, if biometrics were to become commonplace, whether 
it will become a criminal offense to publish your biometric data in public 
fora.  "Here are the holographic images of my fingerprints, my retinal 
scans, and my skin conductivity measurements.  Go ahead and use them to 
impersonate me if you like."  Would this help to enable a repudiation 
defense?  "It wasn't me.  Anyone could have placed my prints there."

The problem with biometrics is that they cannot be "revoked" if 
compromised.  If someone steals my fingerprints, I cannot (yet!) get a new 
set of fingers.


Tony Bartoletti 925-422-3881 <azb@llnl.gov>
Information Operations, Warfare and Assurance Center
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Livermore, CA 94551-9900


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This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : 2001-06-30 21:44:16 PDT