According to one Boston Globe correspondent, fingerprints are unlocking the future. As criminals exploit weak passwords, people are turning to biometric authentication to improve security. Because everyone’s fingerprints are unique, it’s much more difficult to bypass biometric authentication. Plus, fingerprints are easier to keep track of than complex passwords (although for added security, you might choose to combine a password with a fingerprint).
Whether you’re using a fingerprint reader for your key control system, your child’s school or even your computer, here are some tips for getting a successful scan.
Position Your Finger Correctly
Place your finger flat on the sensor. The arches, loops and whorls that distinguish your prints from others’ are in the pad of your finger, not the tip. Also make sure that you position your finger on the scanner the same way each time. Apply light pressure — pressing too hard can distort the ridges in your skin.
Prevent Dry Skin From Affecting Your Scan
Fingerprint scanners feature a silicone membrane that relies on the skin’s natural oils to detect a fingerprint match. If you struggle with dry skin during cold weather, it may take a couple tries for the reader to recognize your fingerprint. To redeposit natural oils, try running your finger along the back side of your ear before placing your finger on the sensor. You can also regularly moisturize with oil-free lotions, but ensure your hands have plenty of time to dry before using the scanner to help prevent residue on the sensor.
Don’t Clean the Device With Any Kind of Liquid
You might be tempted to give your fingerprint reader a good scrubbing with warm soap and water or an all-purpose cleaner, especially during flu season. However, using any type of liquid or cleaning chemicals could damage the device.
Instead, clean the scanner with office tape about once a week. Simply press tape to the surface and lift; the tape traps oils and clears the surface. A soft, dry cloth works as well.
By following these simple tips, you — and you alone — will be able to log in to your system in no time.