Biometric Identification Technology – Bridging the Digital Inclusion Gap

Welcome to our 3-part blog series on digital inclusion. In this first post, Stan Swearingen, CEO of IDEX Biometrics reviews how biometric identification is bridging the digital inclusion gap.

Biometric identification allows for those who are typically digitally excluded to have access to services they otherwise would not.

It’s 2019, and digital inclusion is something that many of us take for granted. However, even today, there are many who do not have consistent, reliable access to the advanced technologies that make our lives easier and that many of us consider a necessity to our quality of life. Biometric identification is one way to bridge this gap and help reach those under-served communities with the benefits that technology can provide.

Personalized Access

Biometric sensors create a unique identifier for each individual. This unique identifier can be used to allow access to a variety of things, including the Internet, access to hardware and software, and even device access for shared devices. This unique access tailors the experience to each individual user, keeping their information both private and secure even on shared interfaces.

Readily Available

Biometric data for identification has become more readily available than ever, and it has become easier to integrate into technology in useful and low-cost ways. This ease of use and integration has led to technology that can help bridge the inclusion gap without a large footprint being created or a high cost of implementation.

Fingerprint sensors have become more commonplace in even lower-cost devices and are used in a variety of ways throughout the world. Their uses in access to public services and systems will help those who have previously been excluded to utilize the tools that they protect and keep secure, without exposing the individuals to risk of personal information being lost.

Why Digital Inclusion is Important

The digitally excluded are missing out on a number of areas that those already with access take for granted. More than simply access to the latest trending video or TV-show-meme, those who do not have access to newer technologies tend to be behind in healthcare and education. These two areas can have a significant negative impact on an individual’s overall quality of life.

Digital inclusion has become a wider focus for technology communities, with an annual Digital Inclusion Week developed to help reach out to communities that do not have access to things such as high speed internet or 4G cellular phones.

Improved Healthcare and Education

Creation of biometric data to serve communities that need access to important and sensitive information will help improve the level of healthcare they receive, as well as help them to better track their education and future educational needs. This implementation into health and educational settings can help promote a more equal footing where technology is concerned and allow communities to grow and flourish in ways that they have previously been unable to.

Although we have entered the 21st century, there is still a gap in access to the latest technology. Biometric authentication seeks to bridge this gap and bring under-served individuals and communities up to speed and in line with the benefits of modern technology.
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