Tokyo, May 11, 2005
Fujitsu Limited today announced its development of a room access security system utilizing its contactless palm vein authentication technology, for room access security of the Department of Planning, Information and Management of the University of Tokyo Hospital. The University of Tokyo Hospital's deployment represents the world's first implementation of Fujitsu's palm vein authentication technology by a university or hospital for room access security.
In the past, the hospital had been using fingerprint-based biometric authentication technology to prevent unauthorized access to its Department of Planning, Information and Management. However, in view of the Personal Information Protection Act that went into full effect in Japan in April 2005, the University of Tokyo Hospital sought a more secure means of preventing information leaks, and began using a new room access security system utilizing Fujitsu's contactless palm vein authentication technology from March 28 this year.
The system's security levels are divided into three access levels: access to the administrative room, the development room and the server room. A contactless palm vein authentication device has been installed at the entrance of each room. The system is able to restrict an individual's entry in stages, by checking data read by the contactless palm vein authentication device against pre-registered palm vein patterns.
Palm vein patterns are unique with each individual and aside from size, the vein patterns do not change over a person's lifetime. As the veins are internal in the body and have a wealth of differentiating features, assuming false identity through forgery is extremely difficult, thereby enabling an extremely high level of security. Furthermore, other advantages of palm vein pattern authentication include minimal impact from such factors as cold weather, injuries, skin chafing, and strong resistance to impact from changes in external environmental factors. Moreover, Fujitsu's system features contactless technology and does not require direct contact with the device. Simply suspending the hand in the air over the device is sufficient for reading and authentication. This hygienic feature makes it possible for numerous users to use the device without hesitance, as it is unnecessary to touch surfaces that others have come into physical contact with.
Key Features of the Contactless Palm Vein Authentication Device
Accuracy of authentication
With the cooperation from individuals from various regions worldwide across a wide range of ages and occupations, Fujitsu has already individually accumulated 140, 000 palm vein patterns and based on tests using this data, Fujitsu has verified a high level of accuracy in authentication(*).
In addition, as the palm contains a large amount of veins, there is an abundance of data thereby providing the system with ample opportunities to further increase authentication performance.
Contactless feature is hygienic
As Fujitsu's system uses contact-less technology, direct contact with the device is unnecessary and simply suspending the hand in the air over the device is sufficient for reading and authentication. This feature enables the system to be superior in hygiene compared to alternative biometric authentication systems that require physical contact with devices, thereby making Fujitsu's system able to alleviate users' psychological resistance to touching an unhygienic surface that numerous others have touched.
Minimal impact from external temperatures
Compared to alternative biometric authentication systems such as those which employ finger vein patterns, it has been verified that Fujitsu's palm vein authentication system is less susceptible to effects from external temperatures.
Impact to the human body
In consideration of effect on the human body, Fujitsu's system uses low-intensity reflected light to read palm vein patterns.
Future developments for the contactless palm vein authentication device
Fujitsu intends to continue to support information management in a wide range of fields by offering leading-edge security technologies, including its contactless palm vein authentication technology.
Fujitsu is currently working on the miniaturization of its contactless palm vein authentication equipment. This will enable Fujitsu to significantly expand the flexibility of the system by allowing it to be used effectively within the spatial constraints of conventional stand-alone ATM machines, as well as convenience store ATMs, kiosk terminals, and room access security systems. In the future, Fujitsu envisions applications for the technology in a wide variety of scenarios, including as equipment installed in personal computers.
For the near future, Fujitsu plans to continue to offer its palm vein authentication system within Japan, and is considering making the system potentially available to other regions of the world.
*Note regarding the high accuracy of authentication of Fujitsu's palm vein authentication technology: When the false rejection rate was 0.01%, the false acceptance rate was below 0.00008%.