New York: Facial recognition, fingerprints and iris scans are passe. The latest biometric identification method on the block is — hold your breath — body odour!
Researchers at Spain’s Universidad Politecnica de Madrid, in collaboration with tech firm IIia Sistemas SL, are developing a system that can verify people by their scent signatures.
Recognisable body odour patterns remain constant enough over time to allow people to be identified with an accuracy rate of 85 per cent.
Researchers believe this paves the way for creating ways to ID people that are less intrusive than measures currently being used, according to a press release by the university.
While iris and fingerprint scans may have a higher accuracy rate, the researchers contend these techniques are commonly associated with criminal records, perhaps making people reluctant to participate in the process. Facial recognition has a high error rate.
Therefore, the release said, the development of scent sensors that could identify a person as they walk through a system stall could provide less invasive solutions with a relatively high accuracy rate.
Researchers believe such technology could be used in airports, border checkpoints or anyplace where photo identification is required.
Security agents may have reputations for being gruff grouches who love nothing more than to nose through your bags, but their rotten tempers might be because of all the body odour they’re forced to smell, day in, day out.
At least with a scent-detecting security system, someone else could sniff out the bad guys, the release added.