Friday, June 30, 2017

New biometric vending machine to dispense restricted products such as alcohol and cannabis

Photo of American Green vending machine finger scanner
Photo: American Green

American Green has introduced a new vending machine prototype designed to allow the purchase of age, prescription or license restricted products. American Green and their technology partner PanPacific have worked non-stop over the last four years to bring this concept to market. The biometric verification technology used is the same used by the U.S. Military and large corporations requiring high levels of security.

Possible uses include dispensing alcohol and pharmaceuticals, including medical cannabis. Medical cannabis is currently available through vending at some dispensaries, but an employees verifies identity and prescription. The new vending system would allow patients greater privacy about their medical condition.

To use the new vending machine, a consumer would create an account using government ID and a copy of doctor’s prescription where needed. Authentication is made with a camera that scans the veins in one’s finger. Once ID is accepted, a touch screen is used to make product selection. A smart phone app has also been developed. A smart phone user after logging into their account and verifying ID would then show a QR code on their smartphone to dispense the product purchased. 

David Gwyther, chairman and acting president at American Green believes, “This is a huge step forward for smart retail and the automated sale of regulated products.” One day soon we may be able to use a smart vending machine to get a beer at a ballpark, casino tokens at a casino, or common pharmaceuticals without visiting the pharmacy.

American Green introduces biometric vending machine system for age-restricted products

 Published June 26, 2017 on

Convenient cannabis: Vending machine checks ID

Zlati Meyer, May 11, 2017 for USA TODAY, Money

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Identity solution found for the world’s vulnerable population?

Photo of Turkish refugees in Chios, Greece, 2016

ID2020 is an organization whose mission is to enable the world’s “invisible” population to have a digital identity. An estimated 1.1 billion people have no official documentation of any kind. A disproportionate number of these people are women and children who struggle to access critical social services and benefits. The goal is to work with governments to implement standardized, secure, low-cost identity management solutions.

At ID2020’s “Platform for Change” Summit, recently held at the United Nations in New York, Accenture, Microsoft and Avanade presented a new identity platform solution based on biometrics and blockchain. Blockchain allows digital information to be distributed – but not copied – allowing a secure and credible way to access data such as biometric information.

Accenture has launched a prototype identity system using blockchain technology by Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, running on Microsoft’s Azure cloud computing platform. The system will use fingerprint or iris biometric scans to authenticate identity in a decentralized manner.

The United Nations has supported using biometric registration and background screening to process refugees. This allows countries the security of knowing who is within their borders. It facilitates programs that offer support and services, which helps keep refugees from falling into the hands of traffickers, and makes them less vulnerable to terrorist organizations.

The UNHCR (UN Refugee Agency) has been working to put biometric ID programs in place for refugees around the world, including Thailand, South Sudan and Chad. These programs have been put in place with government collaboration.

ID2020’s first goal is achieve “technical proof of concept and evaluating multiple avenues to scale" by 2020. By 2030, the goal is to provide “every person on the planet” a digital identity. ID2020 is a private and public partnership in support of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 16.9.

ID2020 Supporters Create Identity Solution Based on Blockchain, Biometrics

Alex Perala, June 19, 2017, on

ID2020 Summit 2017, July 19, 2017, United Nations, NY

What is Blockchain Technology? A Step-by-Step Guide For Beginners

Monday, June 19, 2017

U.S. Citizens and Legal Residents in Australia, Accurate Biometrics can assist with your background checks

Photo of Sydney Opera House with 2016 postal stamps

Accurate Biometrics is  approved by the Australian Government to provide fingerprint based background checks for Immigration.

Accurate Biometrics is an approved FBI channeler providing  “Identity History Summary Checks” – Departmental Order 566-73, for individuals seeking a background check to live, work, or teach abroad. Accurate Biometrics is able to provide email delivery service of your Identity History Summary Checks to facilitate the process of American Citizens abroad in Australia.

Requirements for Immigration  are outlined on the Australian Government website

Details on obtaining one’s FBI Identity History Summary Check through Accurate Biometrics, are available on our website

For more information: 866-361-9944 or

Friday, June 9, 2017

Hong Kong moving to biometric ID for ATM use?

Photo of Hong Kong at night

Hong Kong seeks to learn from the experience of nearby Macau, a resort town in Southern China known for its casinos and luxury hotels. Macau has seen the number of reports of suspicious financial transactions skyrocket recently, and last month announced it would start facial recognition scanning of bankcard customers using ATMs.

Hong Kong is now studying the use of biometric authentication of its ATM users. The Hong Kong Monetary Authority is interested in fingerprints or facial recognition scanning, but has concerns about reliability. Some question whether the new biometric technology is mature and safe enough. Authentication may end up requiring a pin or password in combination with biometric ID for multilayer security.

Last year the number of police reports of suspicious financial transactions more than tripled in Macau, while the number of convictions decreased by over a third, leaving investigators struggling to cope. The total cash withdrawals at ATM machines in Macau topped out over HK $10 billion in a month (about 1.3 million USD), creating concerns over money laundering and capital flight.

The need for updated technology and security for financial transactions in Hong Kong is clear. Hong Kong would like to prevent displaced financial fraud coming to its shores. Hong Kong is evaluating options, and may soon move ahead with biometric security. Hong Kong has previously announced the introduction of facial recognition scanning at airport departure gates.

Hong Kong considering using facial or fingerprint recognition in ATMs

Justin Lee, May 31, 2017, for

Hong Kong Monetary Authority mulls using facial recognition and fingerprint technology in ATMs

Phila Siu, May 29, 2917, for South China Morning Post, Banking and Finance

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Biometric ID update 2017 – secure, convenient and growing rapidly

Photo of Smartphone User

Deloitte Global predicts that the number of mobile devices that include fingerprint readers will top 1 billion this year. About 80% of smartphone users will use fingerprint authentication regularly. An average user will log-on 30 times a day, totaling over 10 trillion fingerprint readings globally throughout the year. While three years ago only premium smartphones had this technology, fingerprint readers are expected to become as standard as cameras on smartphones, tablets and laptops.

Part of the growth of fingerprint authentication is the ease of use. It’s difficult to remember multiple “strong” passwords. By 2020, it’s projected that the average user may have 200 online accounts that require authentication. Fingerprint authentication is easy to set up. Once set up, authentication takes only a second or two as the device checks the matched image stored internally, not "in the cloud". 

While early fingerprint sensors were relatively easy to spoof (fool), newer sensors have ultrasonic technology that captures more detailed images for greater security. Voice readers are hard to use in noisy areas, and voices are easily recorded. Facial recognition works best in good lighting, similar to the original reference picture. It’s sensitive to reflections from glasses or contacts. Facial scans may be spoofed with a photograph. Alternative methods of biometrics authentication account for about 5% of the market compared to 40% for fingerprint readers. 

Current and potential uses of fingerprint ID authentication are growing and include:
  • Financial transactions – 43% of adults in developed markets use their phones to access their bank accounts
  • Retail transactions – a fingerprint reader could be used to provide fast, convenient 1-touch checkout
  • Enterprise use – a fingerprint reader could be used for building access, online intranet access, or timesheet authentication
  • Media access – a fingerprint reader could be used to allow access to paid premium online news and entertainment, and prevent sharing of passwords
  • Government – biometrics including fingerprints could be used to authenticate and simplify tax payments and enable e-voting
Along with fingerprint readers, smartphones and mobile devices can have enhanced security with behavioral biometrics. The device learns the user's typing habits and location information, and checks against that profile when user authentication is needed. Blended use of different biometric inputs, known as multifactor authentication, is expected to become increasingly popular.

Biometric Security Comes of Age 

By  Paul Lee and Duncan Stewart, a Deloitte Insights Article, published in CIO Journal, Wall Street Journal online, March 16, 2017