by the person or is memorized by the individual. The electronic lock that
relies on an encoded card or badge offers the least control because cards and
badges can be lost or stolen. The more sophisticated types of electronic
locks actually identify the person seeking entry on the basis of some
physical characteristic, such as fingerprints or dimensions of fingers. Some
electronic locks use a combination of code and identification of a personal
characteristic, for example, a numerical code and fingerprint identification.
Some electronic lock systems may perform such additional functions as
initiating an alarm or providing automatic personnel entry/exit inventory.
The more common commercially available electronic locks and their
applications are digital cipher locks, card locks, hand geometry comparison
locks, and fingerprint-comparative locks. Regardless of sophistication,
electronic locking systems are convenience locks only and should only be used
for personnel ingress and egress.
a) Digital cypher locks. These are similar to the
combination locks above except that the access code is entered into a keypad.
b) Card readers. Card readers are a means of electronic
entry control which reads authorization information which has been encoded
onto a card. Card readers are highly effective access control devices.
Cards are difficult to counterfeit and the system has a high level of
personnel throughput capability.
c) Video comparator system. This system requires a guard
to verify an individual's identity based on visual characteristics. A
securely stored image is compared with a real-time image of the individual
requesting entry. Such systems are not considered positive personnel
identity verification systems but they have the advantage that it is
difficult to tamper with the stored image.
d) Fingerprints. Fingerprints are considered one of the
most reliable means of personnel identification. Automatic pattern
recognition and computerized data processing facilitate fingerprint
e) Speech. Speech is useful for identity verification and
well-suited to automated processing. Measurements include: waveform
envelope, voice pitch period, relative amplitude spectrum, and vocal trait
f) Handwriting. Automated handwriting verification
systems are available that utilize handwriting dynamics such as velocity and
acceleration as a function of time. Statistical evaluation of these data
indicates that an individual's signature is unique and provides a reliable
method of verification of identity.
g) Hand geometry. These systems perform computerized
statistical analysis of finger length data used in identifying a hand. Hand