Tuesday, July 28, 2009

FingerTec 101

I was surprised to be informed that the failure rate of FingerTec products is almost 50% at one of our customer’s site, which was a very rare complaint. Sensing that something might have gone wrong, we planned a visit only to find out that most of the failed users were so afraid to place their fingers on the machine until they trembled. And some did not place the fingers properly and some placed their fingers very briefly until the system couldn’t response in time.
Placing a finger on a scanner sounds so simple; a no brainer could do it, argue many. Dealers always focus on installation, integration, training and commissioning on the administration side of the system; often times do not pay enough attention on users of the system. As long as the system is up and running, the users have no choice but to use it. Correct?
Not necessarily.

What? Now they wanna use fingerprint system in zoos?

Biometrics, though becoming popular in the industry, is still an alien to many. Biometrics doesn’t make sense to regular people, to Joe and Jane, unless they have done a bit of research or they have the need to get to know biometrics. Unlike punch card, biometrics is a novelty subject. This subject requires explanation to the general public. Some thought that this product is a mobile phone and I’m not making this up!
What goes through users’ minds when it comes to putting their fingers on the scanner? Human mind is uniquely powerful; human emotions could vary from one extreme to another. Could the machine burn my finger? Of course it could not or it wouldn’t pass any safety tests. But, in my opinion, the question is relevant. Not everyone is having an IQ of 100 and more; a bigger portion of the population has an IQ of less than that, which makes the question a valid one.
Trying a new gadget or a machine prompts excitement, apprehension and inquisition. All sorts of questions pop out. Could the system save my fingerprint details and use it for other things? Though FingerTec’s system is using algorithm to translate the fingerprint minutiae into strings of code, which ONLY can be used for the purpose it is intended to, the question is a definitely not wrong. Particularly when it involves foreign workers, like the one at the site, which we visited. It might seem ridiculous but they have reasons to feel what they felt. Would they use my fingerprint for harmful purpose? What if I’m late 10 minutes, would they accumulate the short time and cut my salary? All these are valid questions and need to be clarified.

New thing requires an introduction. And the same goes to the introduction of FingerTec to new users. Apart from performing the most effective enrollments to ensure successful verification, administration needs to EDUCATE users on how to use fingerprint machines, the facts and the fictions. Knowledge makes acceptance quicker and easier, and it also makes operation smoother. When people are in the know, everything becomes easier.
Hi-Tech Human Touch.

by Norana Johar, COO, FingerTec HQ