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Fingerprint Reader Technology
The study and use of fingerprint identification has been an effective tool of law enforcement since the early 1900s. With the development of live-scan fingerprint reader technology, a fingerprint can be scanned electronically and immediately viewed on a computer screen, submitted to a database or compared by software programs without the use of paper and ink.
Scientists have long known that fingerprints are unique to each individual. According to Raviraj Technologies, fingerprints in clay tablets were used in ancient Babylon during business transactions. Fingerprints have been used for criminal investigations since in the early 1900s and in the 1960s, the FBI introduced electronic fingerprint readers and scanners.
Fingerprint reader technology is used in criminal investigation and in security. Several government agencies use fingerprint readers as keys to gain access to secure areas and manufacturers have released deadbolt fingerprint readers for home use. Many modern computers employ fingerprint reader technology to secure the contents of the computer allowing only a matching fingerprint scan to access the files.
Since fingerprints are different for each individual, fingerprint readers and fingerprint matching software create secure locks and passwords. A fingerprint pattern is difficult to duplicate to evade the system, but it is not infallible. Fingerprints can be lifted from inanimate objects since the prints linger for long periods of time, so a determined thief or hacker can potentially hack into the computer or break into the building.