How do fingerprint scanners work?

Fingerprint access control is a tried, tested, and widely adopted technology for securing doors, gates and internal high-security areas.

Fingerprint scanners are a common technology used for security and identification purposes. They rely on sophisticated algorithms to identify unique patterns in a person’s fingerprints. In this article, we will explore the fascinating technology behind fingerprint scanners, the processes involved in capturing and analysing data, the advantages of using fingerprint scanners in access control, and the future of fingerprint scanners and access control.

Fingerprint Authentication: A Step-by-Step Process

A) Enrolment

The initial registration of a fingerprint within an access control system is a crucial step in establishing the user’s identity. During the enrolment process, the user places their finger on the scanner, allowing the device to capture an image of the fingerprint. This image is then processed and converted into a digital template, which comprises unique data points extracted from the fingerprint’s pattern. This digital template is securely stored within the access control system’s database, serving as a reference for future authentication attempts.

B) Verification

Once a user’s fingerprint is enrolled in the system, the verification process is employed to authenticate the individual’s identity when they attempt to access a secured area. As demonstrated in the video, the user places their finger on the scanner, which captures a new image of the fingerprint. The system then processes this image and compares it to the stored digital template associated with the user’s identity.

There are two potential outcomes of this comparison process:

  1. Successful match: If the newly captured fingerprint image matches the stored template, the system confirms the user’s identity and grants them access to the secured area.
  2. Unsuccessful match: If the system does not find a match between the captured fingerprint image and the stored template, access is denied, indicating either an incorrect fingerprint or an unauthorised user.

The fingerprint authentication process ensures that only verified individuals can gain entry to secured areas, providing an additional layer of security and protection for sensitive spaces.

Convenience and Accountability

One of the most appealing aspects of fingerprint authentication is its user-friendly nature and speed. Unlike keys, cards, or passwords, users do not need to carry anything or memorise a code to access secure areas. Instead, they simply place their finger on the scanner for a quick and seamless verification process. This not only saves time but also eliminates the frustration of lost keys or forgotten passwords, making fingerprint scanners a more convenient option for access control.

Fingerprint scanners, such as the Optima ID, enhance accountability by creating an audit trail of individuals who have accessed specific areas. Each time a user’s fingerprint is verified, the system logs the date, time, and identity of the person granted access. This information can be invaluable for tracking the movement of personnel within a facility, investigating security incidents, or monitoring employee attendance. The ability to track and record access events provides a higher level of accountability and transparency within an organisation, further strengthening the benefits of fingerprint scanners in access control systems.


Best Practices for Implementing Fingerprint Scanners on Your Site

It is vital to select and install the right type of fingerprint scanner based on your company’s specific needs. Factors such as the level of security required, environmental conditions (if the scanner is indoors or outdoors), and flow of people should be considered when choosing the most appropriate scanner. Seeing advice from Security Experts will help you ensure that you have the right system, providing reliable and accurate authentication for access control.

Maintaining and cleaning fingerprint scanners is essential for ensuring optimal performance. Dirt, dust, and other contaminants can interfere with the scanner’s ability to accurately capture fingerprint images, potentially leading to false rejections or compromised security. Regular cleaning and inspection of the scanner’s surface, as well as routine system maintenance, can help prevent these issues and maintain the scanner’s effectiveness.

Regular servicing is essential for maintaining the efficiency and longevity of your fingerprint scanner and access control system. By choosing a reputable and experienced provider such as Almas Industries, you can ensure that your system is always maintained and remains functional. A reliable provider will not only help with the installation and initial setup but also offer ongoing support, including routine check-ups, software updates, and prompt assistance in case of any technical issues. This proactive approach to servicing ensures that your access control system operates at its peak performance, safeguarding your organisation’s security and providing a seamless authentication experience for users.


Future-proofing your Access Control System

When selecting the system for your fingerprint scanner, it’s important to consider the potential for future expansion and integration as your organisation grows or security needs evolve.

Opting for a scalable and flexible system such as Optima Software and Optima 360 allows you to easily add more fingerprint scanners or incorporate additional security measures, such as facial recognition or access cards, as required. This adaptability ensures that your access control solution can seamlessly accommodate changes in site size, staff numbers, or technological advancements without necessitating a complete overhaul.

By choosing a system with expandability and integration capabilities, you make a future-proof investment that supports the long-term security and operational efficiency of your organisation.

For more information on fingerprint scanners, access control systems, and integrating your security solutions, contact the team at Almas Industries today. You can call us on 0333 567 6677 (UK) or 01 68 333 68 (IRE) or email us: [email protected]

banner showing full access control range