IBM forecasts strong biometrics market in 2012

21 December 2011

Posted by Samuel Couratin

Biometrics technology looks set to take off in 2012, if predictions by IBM are anything to go by.

The electronics giant has published its forecasts for next year, including an anticipated leap in the spread of the solutions to replace passwords over the coming years.

In its annual end of the year forecast, the company outlined the solutions it expects will "define the future", including biometrics tools.

"Your biological makeup is the key to your individual identity and soon, it will become the key to safeguarding it," the organization stated, adding that the technology is likely to be used in ATM machines, mobile phones and banking systems.

IBM stressed the importance of trust when it comes to such solutions, pointing out that "each person has a unique biological identity and behind all that is data", but individuals should be able to opt in and out of providing information such as retinal scans, voice files and facial definitions.

Entitled Five in Five, the predictions looks at the leading technologies that will dominate the market over the next half-decade, changing lives and the way in which people work.

Other innovations expected to be seen during the coming five years, according to IBM, include smartphones and computers that link to brains and renewable energy technology that captures heat from laptops, walking, cycling, water flowing through pipes and other kinetic sources to transform into power.

Biometrics technology is being used in India as part of a major project to collect information on all citizens and issue them with individual IDs.

Agency the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has been charged with running the scheme and the Indian Government recently stressed that safeguards have been put in place to ensure that it adheres to data protection standards, the Press Trust of India reported.

Ashwani Kumar, India's Planning Minister, explained that confidentiality of citizens would be upheld and processes are in place to prevent unlawful access to data.

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