Thursday, April 20, 2017

Facial biometrics will help prevent cheating in Chinese marathons

Photo of runners with Chinese flag

Marathon running has soared in popularity in China. With the increase in runners and marathons, there has been also been an increase in reports of cheating, prompting new security measures.

Marathon race participation has grown along with the rise of China’s middle class, as more Chinese aspire to a healthy lifestyle. The Chinese Athletic Association (CAA) registered a total of 328 marathon events in 2016, which is double that of the previous year. 

One motive for the increase in cheating is the prizes awarded at many of the marathons. Another reason is more subtle – the pressure to have great results to post on social media.

A bold form of cheating is bib switching with unregistered participants or ringers. In a race in Shenzhen last December, two female participants had their results cancelled when it was discovered that male ringers had run in their places.

China is starting to use facial recognition scanning to crack down on the cheating. For the Beijing half marathon that just ran, 20,000 people will have been required to have their biometrics captured before the race. As of this post, there are no updates on the biometric security program, but it’s likely biometric security is a trend that will grow along with the popularity of this sport.

Beijing marathon to use facial recognition in cheating crackdown 

Neil Connor, April 13, 2017 , article for The Telepgraph, UK
(additional reporting by Christine Wei)

Runners from around the world are flocking to marathons hosted by China’s most toxic cities

Echo Huang, April 12, 2017, article on Quartz website 

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Can Your Lips Reveal your Identity?

Photo of profiles of child and adult faces

Establishing a person’s identity is a main concern of forensic investigators, and India’s Forensic Science Laboratories often field questions about the parentage of children. While DNA testing is reliable and trusted, a simpler, less costly primary test is desired. New research is intriguing.

Dr. Anshika Dube, of the Institute of Forensic Science at Gujarat Forensic Sciences University, has conducted an exploratory study of the relationship between gender and genetic factors in rugoscopy (the study of the hard tissue patterns of the mouth’s palate), chieloscopy (the study of lip pattens), and dactyloscopy (the study of fingerprints).

The findings have been promising, showing a strong correlation between parents and children. The rugoscopy results showed a 71.4% correlation between mother and daughter, and 66.7% between father and son. Chieloscopy results showed a nearly 100% correlation between mother and daughter, and father and son. Of the two, rugoscopy may end up being more useful, as the hard palate is less likely to be changed by damage from injury.

Hard palate patterning or lip prints may end up becoming tools to provide an initial test to identify the family lineage of a missing person. They may also become another tool to help forensic investigators identify suspects. Research is ongoing.

Lips can reveal your identity

Parth Shastri | The Times of India | City News|Ahmedabad News | April 10, 2017

Thursday, April 6, 2017

New Low Cost 3D Contactless Fingerprinting System

Diagrammed fingerprint illustration

Advances in 3D fingerprint scanning technology are giving rise to smaller, more affordable 3D contactless fingerprinting systems. A team at Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) has developed a new desktop system for 3D fingerprint identification with high accuracy, quick processing (about 2 seconds), and comparatively low cost (up to $780) compared to current commercially used 3D systems.

2D fingerprinting, the current standard, is subject to a certain degree of inaccuracy due to partial prints or distortion from blurring or smearing that can occur when fingers are pressed against a hard surface like paper or a scanner screen. That problem is eliminated with 3D contactless fingerprinting. PolyU’s contactless printing technology has developed to a measured 97% accuracy with prints scanned without the closeness of touch.

Minutiae (specific points in a fingerprint) features such as ridge edges and bifurcation (where a ridge splits into two) are the most universally recognized fingerprint details. About 40 to 45 minutiae points can be recovered from an average fingerprint scan. The more minutiae points that are matched, the higher the confidence and reliability of the match. With 3D fingerprinting technology, more information is captured, allowing a more accurate representation of a fingerprint, and a higher certainty in matching.

More accuracy, more portability and more affordability in 3D contactless fingerprint identification systems will provide a boon to law enforcement agencies, forensics, secure access, and border and travel security.

A new 3D fingerprint identification system developed

Published by By BioSpectrum Bureau, April 3, 2017 

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Fingerprinting for Nurse Licensure in Illinois

Photo of a smiling nurse

Accurate Biometrics has worked closely with the nursing schools in Illinois since 2000 and has processed fingerprints for over 50,000 students for licensure through the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR). Our live scan fingerprint services assist students in all professional nursing programs including: Practical Nursing Degree Program – LPN, Associate Degree Program – RN, and Baccalaureate Program – RN.

We know fingerprinting better than anyone else, and offer peace of mind to all students who choose Accurate Biometrics as their live scan fingerprint service provider. Among the features and benefits of the services we provide to all of our customers are:
  • Customer Service support through our toll free number 1-866-361-9944
  • Online support through “Pure Chat” service on website.
  • Email support through 
  • Customized Receipt with Transaction Control Number (TCN) for reference in conjunction with the NCLEX examination.
  • Same day transmission of all submitted  fingerprints to Illinois State Police (ISP)
  • “Answer Back” from ISP to ensure fingerprints are received and processed.
  • We have 99.7% accuracy rate on our fingerprint submissions
  • Data securely transported with 256-Bit AES SSL encryption.
  • IT Technology meets or exceeds federal standards as a federal contractor.
  • We are proud of our 10 year Better Business Award (BBB) for our integrity and commitment to excellence and maintain anA+ rating.
  • We can come onsite to fingerprints groups of 20 or more.  

In State Applicants

We have 40+ locations in Illinois, no appointment or pre-registration necessary. You can access our live schedule here. 

Make sure you bring a valid government issued photo ID. Our walk-in rate is $62.00.  
We accept Money Orders and all major credit cards, but no personal checks or cash are accepted for payment. Accurate Biometrics will provide you with a receipt for your fingerprinting that includes your Transaction Control Number (TCN) that you will need to record on your license application for reference.

It is required by the Illinois State Police that we collect a full set of fingerprints and a personal photo in order to process your fingerprints for your nurse license. The ISP will process your fingerprints against the State and FBI Automated Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS) and send the results back to IDFPR to match up with your license application. Accurate Biometrics does not receive any fingerprint results.
It is important that you time your license application and your fingerprinting to coincide with each other. As a rule of thumb, you have a 60 day time frame for your license application, test results and your fingerprints to meet up at IDFPR for processing. If you need to retake your exam, you should do so immediately if you have already submitted fingerprints and your paperwork to IDFPR for processing. You will need to retake your fingerprints if your complete application and test results are received after 60 days of the date IDFPR receives your fingerprints.

Please Note: If you are denied for any reason of obtaining a professional license from Illinois based on your criminal history, you have no later than 20 days to file an appeal under 60 Ill. Adm. Code 1110. Accurate Biometrics recommends obtaining a FBI Departmental Order (DO) 566-73 immediately to address a denial letter for licensure by the department for any matters based upon criminal history. A Departmental Order is a personal review of one’s criminal history on file with the FBI and is used to make sure one’s criminal history is complete, accurate and up to date. It is a report of all arrests and convictions from every state reported to the FBI. Accurate Biometrics is an authorized FBI channeler that provides authenticated FBI results to all U.S. citizens and legal residents. A Departmental Order is available through any of our locations on a walk -in basis. More details are available on our website. 

Accurate Biometrics recommends that anyone who is concerned about a criminal history record obtain a DO before one completes their studies in a medical profession program. In some cases, disqualifying convictions can be sealed or expunged, but, that course of action is always recommended before one begins their studies to make sure one is able to work in their chosen profession. 

Out of State Applicants

For students out-of-state and across the globe, Accurate Biometrics offers same day processing on all FD-258 ink card submissions we receive. India, the Philippines, and Saudi Arabia are among the countries that we receive deliveries from daily. Accurate Biometrics is approved by IDFPR to process all out-of-state nursing students manually inked fingerprint cards. 

The following are required for processing out of state applicants: 
  • Completed fingerprint card
  • Payment-Money Order, Company Check or Credit Card Payment Form (NO PERSONAL CHECKS)
  • Completed Out of State Fingerprinting Form 
  • Completed Identity Verification Certifying Statement
Links to complete packet of out of state forms required for processing can be downloaded here.  
  • We will process your fingerprint card, convert it to a digital format, and send it electronically to the Illinois State Police and FBI for the background check. The results will be forwarded directly from the ISP to IDFPR
  • Do not send any part of your licensing application to Accurate Biometrics. Licensing applications must be sent to the state agency that issues the license.
  • Your fingerprint card and accompanying forms will be shredded after we have confirmed a successful receipt and processing of the images by the Illinois State Police.
  • For all Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation licensure applicants: If you do not receive a fingerprint receipt from Accurate Biometrics via email within 2 weeks of having mailed the fingerprint card, please call our customer service department at 773-685-5699.
Detailed instructions for in state and out of state live scan fingerprint services are available here.

Accurate Biometrics is a technology-enabled service company offering high performance, quality electronic fingerprint solutions to Federal, State, and corporate clients throughout the United States. We are the choice of many public and private companies throughout the United States. Our years of service and knowledge of the industry have allowed us to maintain all of our bid contracts based on our proven ability to respond to our customers’ needs

Accurate Biometrics, Inc
Accurate Biometrics logo

Corporate Office:
500 Park BLVD Suite 1260
Itasca, IL 60143
Phone: 866-361-9944
email :
Illinois Vendor License:  # 262-000016

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Hair proteins a more unique identifier than DNA in forensic analysis?

Photo of a girl's hair blowing in the wind

Forensic hair analysis has lost some credibility in recent years as the FBI has acknowledged that their microscopic hair comparison unit overestimated their accuracy in matching forensic hair samples for many years. However, recent research in hair proteins may bring hair analysis to the forefront of forensic analysis, as an identifier more unique than DNA sequencing.

The problem with using DNA in forensic study is that it breaks down pretty quickly when it’s not inside living cells. Small amounts of DNA survive inside hair, hidden in mitochondria. It’s not as complete as DNA from a living cell nucleus. In contrast, hair proteins are more stable and abundant than DNA, and researchers are finding many variations that may be unique to the individual. 

A study from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, USA, published in September 2016, analyzed hair from 76 men and women, as well as 6 samples from remains up to 250 years old. So far they have found 185 distinct patterns of amino acids, called markers, that could be used to identify an individual’s genetic identity. Upon comparing the protein analysis to DNA samples from the subjects, they were able to match the hair to the individual over 98% of the time. The researchers found protein analysis to have a specificity of 1 in 100,000, as compared to 1 in 10,000 with mitochondrial DNA.

Protein based identification could become another great tool for crime scene investigators, as well as archeologists. Research is expanding into proteins from other tissues such as skin, teeth and bones. Eventually proteins from the hair and body may be used to identify individuals in a court of law, alongside or in favor of DNA.

Humans may be uniquely identified by the proteins in their hair

PLOS. "Humans may be uniquely identified by the proteins in their hair: Protein identification technique may be used in forensics, archaeology." ScienceDaily,  September 7, 2016. 

Proteins In Your Hair Could Uniquely Identify You At A Crime Scene

By Knvul Sheikh, Popular Science, September 9, 2016

Report: FBI overstated hair matches in trials

Marisol Bello , USA TODAY, April 19, 2015

Friday, March 3, 2017

Refined fingerprint technique captures prints previously unattainable

Photo of yellow police line tape

A new technique reveals and gives a more detailed appearance of fingerprints on metallic surfaces such as gun shell casings, even when the prints are several days old, covered in water, exposed to dust, or wiped down. This could be a helpful tool to law enforcement technicians solving crimes involving guns.

This finding is from joint research done by Dr. John Bond, University of Leicester, and Dr. Xu Jingyang, Zhejiang Police College. It builds on earlier research by Dr. Bond in 2012 at Leicester. At that time, Dr. Bond was able to reveal hidden prints on metal by applying a large voltage and then adding ceramic beads coated with a fine powder. This technique has been refined to apply powder to a corroded spent shell casing that has been electrostatically charged.

Per Dr. Bond, “Visually fingerprinting corrosion in brass is easily achievable and this latest development should be viewed as an additional means of identifying offenders in gun-related offences."

A portable electrostatic generator can be set up using common forensic lab equipment, so this type of analysis would be affordable, and relatively easy to put into practice. The new team is working on a prototype, and will publish a paper on the technique this year.

Refined fingerprint technique could give criminals a nasty shock

Materials provided by University of Leicester. Published online by ScienceDaily,  September 12, 2016

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Can biometrics be used to help protect endangered animals?

Lemur close-up photo

Anil Jain, biometrics expert and professor at Michigan State University is finding new and creative ways to solve problems with biometric facial recognition. Jain and his team have modified their human biometric analysis system to create a facial recognition system for endangered lemurs in Madagascar.

Studying animals over time provides crucial data on how long they live, how often they reproduce, information on infant and juvenile mortality, and overall population growth or decline. 

Traditionally, conservationists use “soft Identifiers” to recognize primates, such as differences in body size and the presence of injuries or scars. Variations in appearance make it difficult to keep track of one lemur over time. Tagging is another way to identify animals, but “capture and collar” methods create stress and can injure the animal. Facial biometrics now provides a humane and accurate way to keep track of the animals.

Jain already has 462 lemur images on file, largely from the Ranomafana National Park in Madagascar. On a test of 100 images, the LemurFaceID system had an accuracy rate of nearly 99%. Facial recognition analysis is fast, safe and accurate. Using LemurFaceID can help conservationists with their work.

Endangered animals are often illegally captured and taken from their natural environment to use as pets. Facial biometric analysis could also be used to help track missing lemurs, providing law enforcement, tourists and researchers a means to rapidly report and identify captive lemurs. This technology could also be expanded to work with other endangered animal groups.

Can facial recognition systems help save lemurs?

Published on MSU TODAY: Environment + Science & Technology, Feb. 17, 2017, contacts Kim Ward and Anil Jain