Imagine if you could open a locked door by placing your finger on a digital scanner. It sounds like something out of a science-fiction movie, right? While it may seem a little far-fetched even by today’s technology standards, fingerprint locks have actually been available to consumers for many years, but most professionals refer to them as, “biometric” locks.
Biometric technology refers to physiological identifiers or human traits (e.g. a fingerprint) and they’re used in fingerprint locks as an access control system. By scanning the unique lines of a person’s finger, these locks are not only more convenient than traditional deadbolts, but they’re also more secure. Here are a few things you need to know about these high-security locks.
Benefits of Fingerprint Locks
Most conventional locks have pin-tumblers that are vulnerable to forced entry, but fingerprint locks are keyless so they cannot be picked or bumped. Because of this, biometric locks are more reliable, not to mention they provide peace of mind that stolen keys and getting locked out are problems of the past.
In addition to being virtually impossible to deceive, most fingerprint locks can detect when a door closes and will automatically lock after five seconds. If you’re tired of finding an unsecured door at your home or business, then a fingerprint lock may be your solution.
Biometric locks can be programmed to recognize a thousand authorized users, giving you more control than ever before of who has access privileges. With the option to assign fingerprint identification, pin code entry, or both, you can easily assign the type of access for each authorized user.
Users can be granted or denied access via computer so you can quickly program the lock whether you’re at home or the office. Once the desired access privileges are set, you can upload them to the lock using a thumb drive. Additionally, fingerprint locks also record the time and date of each entrance, making it easy to audit user activity.
Unable to Duplicate
While they can be opened with a key or a security code, fingerprint locks rely on a person’s actual thumbprint, a unique feature that is very difficult to replicate. Unlike a key, a fingerprint cannot be lost, stolen, or taken to a locksmith for duplication.
Moreover, biometric locks detect whether a thumbprint is a match without having to send information to an external source, and they’re designed to identify the properties of a 3D finger. Using special silicone sensors, these locks will reject anything that doesn’t resemble the characteristics of a human finger.
The Future of Biometric Technology
While fingerprint locks are becoming more popular for securing homes and businesses, other biometric locks are emerging as well. Here’s a look at the future of these “smart” locks.
Voice Recognition Locks
Like fingerprints, our voices have unique characteristics that render them difficult to duplicate. Voice recognition locks are designed to analyze specific vocal traits such as texture as well as pronunciation. This advanced technology is used in other applications as well, including cell phones, ATMs, automobiles, and computers.
Retinal Scanning Locks
Remember that scene in “Demolition Man” where Wesley Snipe’s character escaped from captivity using a retinal scanner? Well, this same technology is being developed in deadbolts. Retinal scanning locks are still somewhat of a novelty item, but these locks could soon be on every front door in the foreseeable future.
Facial Recognition Locks
Some biometric locks can identify an authorized user by scanning a person’s face. Known as facial recognition, these locks only require a user to simply look into a machine—there’s no physical contact required. Despite the fact that these locks are largely unknown to the public, facial recognition locks are currently available for both commercial and residential applications. Only time will tell if these state-of-the-art locks will become the next standard in home security.