By now, biometric systems find already home in a broad range of commercial and institutional applications. They are typically employed to authenticate users before allowing access to restricted areas or services. The interest in biometrics is mainly due to their potential advantages over traditional authentication procedures. Such advantages extend across: security, accuracy, reliability, usability, and friendliness. Unfortunately, with the benefits also possible risks arise. A main concern in the design of biometric authentication systems is the protection of the biometric templates. In fact, potential threats to users ’ privacy might derive from the abuse of biometric information. These privacy concerns are the subject of current discussions and often prevent the adoption of biometric systems on a large scale. The aim of this paper is to present the latest advances in the area of biometric authentication systems comprising the construction of biometric templates from actual samples. The discussion will cover research results published in the open literature and patents recently filed with inventions related to the field.
Biometric identification, privacy, secure sketch, fuzzy extractor, multimodal biometrics, user authentication
Dipartimento di Tecnologie dell'Informazione, Universita degli Studi di Milano, Via Bramante 65,26013 Crema, Italy.