Understanding How Biometric Locks Work and Where You Can Install Them

Understanding How Biometric Locks Work and Where You Can Install Them

Biometric locks were merely a cinematic creation not long ago. However, the modern era has seen these locks emerge as prominent security devices. They have added an extra layer of security to our houses as well as to our offices, making us feel safer. Here’s all that you need to know about biometric locks and where you can easily install them:

What are biometric locks?

“Biometric” locks, as the name suggests, measure unique human features before they can be opened. It either scans the retina or a person’s fingerprints before granting them access. A human retina as well as our fingerprints are unique to each individual and therefore allow safety, security, and privacy to the users of a biometric lock. A biometric lock that scans the retina is still not that common, however, locks that use fingerprint scanners have become widely popular.

How the biometric fingerprint lock works

The fingerprints of each individual are unique, enabling a fingerprint scanner to easily identify the correct user/owner of the biometric lock, granting access only to them.

There are different ways of scanning fingerprints for a biometric lock. Optical scanners primarily rely on the photograph of the fingerprint. They are therefore not as secure and can be easily thwarted using a photo of the fingerprint. Capacitor scanners, on the contrary, make a mold of the fingerprint electronically. Like optical scanners, they are also easily deceived. Ultrasound scanners, on the other hand, use high-frequency sound waves to penetrate the skin’s surface to get the scan, making them the most secure. They are, however, the most heavy on the pocket for the same reason.

What is Multiple Factor Authentication?

As is obvious from the name, this method works by cross-checking the user’s identity in more than one way. In order to gain access, the user has to first undergo a fingerprint scan followed by another means of authentication. The second level of authentication is usually typing in a password. Multiple factor authentication becomes important especially for the capacitor and optical scanners that are easy to be thwarted.

The advantages and disadvantages of biometric locks

One of the biggest advantages of biometric locks is that you never forget your keys. Your retina and fingerprints are an easy answer if you get locked out simply because your keys are inside. 

Biometric locks are also beneficial as you don’t have to get multiple copies of the keys for each user. These locks have the capacity to store multiple scans. Furthermore, you can easily add more or delete a few by reprogramming the biometric lock.

These locks run on electricity and this hinders their utility. Even the residential biometric locks run on batteries that can run out any time, leaving you in a fix. Another disadvantage is the lock’s reliance on fingerprints. If your fingerprint is not properly scanned or if you have a cut on the finger, the lock will deny you access. It is for these limitations that biometric locks come with an override key that will help you reprogram the lock.

Where are biometric locks installed?

The biometric lock can be used to restrict access to an area both in commercial as well as residential buildings. It can be installed on doors if you wish to prohibit unwanted movement. 

There are other applications of a biometric lock like protecting a safe, padlocks, or even your computer. Even time clocks are safeguarded by certain companies to prevent time to obstruct time fraud.

Important things to keep in mind about biometric locks

  • What are they made of?: Aluminium locks are easily damaged while a steel or brass body is more resistant to attempted damage.
  • The composition: It is imperative to pick a biometric lock that is built with strong mechanical components for durability.
  • False rejection: Knowing how often your lock rejects valid fingerprints is important.
  • What is the override system?: Remember to have an override key or password that can help you to gain access in the event the biometric scanner fails.

While biometric locks have revolutionized security solutions, they can still be a little complicated to handle. It is therefore a good idea to use the services of an expert locksmith who will guide you towards a biometric lock that is ideal for your specific needs.

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