Monday, August 27, 2007

USA installs school scanners over summer break

States in the USA have taken advantage of the summer break by installing fingerprint biometric scanner for lunches, in Ohio, Florida, West Virginia and Maryland.

Kathy Thomas, at Gilpin Manor Elementary school, said in this article some parents objections to the new system might be based on inaccurate information.

Mmm...based on her view I'd say she is the one inaccurately educated about the fingerprint systems. See these international computer expert's views on using school biometric systems.

She says, “The new system uses a student’s fingerprint to create a corresponding identification number based on certain unique points of the print,” she said. “But it’s not actually recording the fingerprint itself, and we’re not storing anyone’s fingerprints in our computers.” - Yes you are. It's a digital biometric identifier of a child's fingerprint, not noseprint, earprint or footprint - it's a fingerprint - law enforcement and governments use similiar biometric systems because it stores a "fingerprint".

This picture accompanied the article, let's see... there clearly is a computer with an image of a fingerprint on it, the print is recorded initially and a biometric identifier of the child's fingerprint is stored that is absolutely unique to that child and can be used in law i.e, Police can access school biometric databases if they wish.

Kathy Thomas then goes on to say.. "School officials, for instance, cannot provide law enforcement with a copy of a student’s fingerprint from the system because no actual prints are recorded." Wrong - I don't know about US law but certainly in the UK police are able to access a school biometric database, if they believe it will help solve a crime, without parental knowledge.

With regard to the USA, interestingly CSI NY , the tv series, (I think series 3 episode 10 entitled "Sweet 16") ran a sub-plot where a teenage girl was joyriding in a car and non of the fingerprints in the car were on the police database (AFIS). The school had a biometric database and the CSI squad ran it through the school database to check the print and found the joyrider via that.


ThoughtCriminal said...

I saw this story and can't believe any parent would be happy with it.

It's places like this that will make this procedure 'normal' for children growing up with it. I wouldn't be at all happy with a nursery that felt it didn't know who was going in and out of their doors.

Anonymous said...

In Monticello, Illinois USA student's assignments were subpoenaed for use in handwriting analysis to find and charge a student who allegedly wrote supposedly threatening messages on a bathroom mirror.

If police can use SCHOOL ASSIGNMENTS as evidence against a student, it would be ignorant at best to think they couldn't access fingerprint data.

Pippa King said...

Well exactly.