World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Retinal scan

Article Id: WHEBN0000407749
Reproduction Date:

Title: Retinal scan  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Biometrics, Retina, Iris recognition, Personal identifier, Professional Truck Driver Institute
Collection: Biometrics
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Retinal scan

A retinal scan is a biometric technique that uses the unique patterns on a person's retina blood vessels. It is not to be confused with another ocular-based technology, iris recognition, commonly called an "iris scanner."

Contents

  • Introduction 1
  • History 2
  • In popular culture 3
  • Uses 4
  • Pros and cons 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7

Introduction

A close of the controls of a Topcon retinal camera

The human retina is a thin tissue composed of neural cells that is located in the posterior portion of the eye. Because of the complex structure of the capillaries that supply the retina with blood, each person's retina is unique. The network of blood vessels in the retina is not entirely genetically determined and thus even identical twins do not share a similar pattern.

Although retinal patterns may be altered in cases of diabetes, glaucoma or retinal degenerative disorders, the retina typically remains unchanged from birth until death. Due to its unique and unchanging nature, the retina appears to be the most precise and reliable biometric, aside from DNA.[1] The National Center for State Courts estimate that retinal scanning has an error rate of one in ten million.[2]

A retinal scan is performed by casting an unperceived beam of low-energy infrared light into a person’s eye as they look through the scanner's eyepiece. This beam of light traces a standardized path on the retina. Because retinal blood vessels absorb light more readily than the surrounding tissue, the amount of reflection varies during the scan. The pattern of variations is digitized and stored in a database.[3]

History

The idea for retinal identification was first conceived by Dr Carleton Simon and Dr Isadore Goldstein and was published in the New York State Journal of Medicine in 1935.[4] The idea was ahead of its time, but once technology caught up, the concept for a retinal scanning device emerged in 1975. In 1976, Robert "Buzz" Hill formed a corporation named EyeDentify, Inc., and made a full-time effort to research and develop such a device. In 1978, specific means for a retinal scanner was patented, followed by a commercial model in 1981.

In popular culture

The relative obscurity and "high tech" nature of retinal scans means that they are a frequent device in fiction to suggest that an area has been particularly strongly secured against intrusion. Some notable examples include:

In the movie Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982), Admiral Kirk gains access to top secret computer files by use of a retinal scan.

In the movie Batman (1966), Batman describes to Robin how the tiny vessels in the retina are unique to the individual and utilizing the portable retina scan device in the Batmobile they could confirm the identity of the Penguin.

Characters in the films GoldenEye (1995), Mission: Impossible (1996), Barb Wire (1996), Entrapment (1999), Minority Report (2002) and Paycheck (2003) utilize or try to deceive retinal scanners.[5]

In the Splinter Cell series, retinal scanners are used to identify agents within Third Echelon and guards within military/business complexes.

In the 2012 film The Avengers, characters gain access to a quantity of very rare iridium by using two devices: one which apparently hooks onto a victim's eyeball, and another which receives signals from the first to holographically reconstruct the retina to fool the scanner.

Uses

Retinal scanners are typically used for authentication and identification purposes. Retinal scanning has been utilized by several government agencies including the FBI, CIA, and NASA. However, in recent years, retinal scanning has become more commercially popular. Retinal scanning has been used in prisons, for ATM identity verification and the prevention of welfare fraud.[6] Retinal scanning also has medical application. Communicable illnesses such as AIDS, syphilis, malaria, chicken pox and Lyme disease as well as hereditary diseases like leukemia, lymphoma, and sickle cell anemia affect the eyes. Pregnancy also affects the eyes. Likewise, indications of chronic health conditions such as congestive heart failure, atherosclerosis, and cholesterol issues first appear in the eyes.[7]

Pros and cons

Advantages[8]

  • Low occurrence of false positives
  • Extremely low (almost 0%) false negative rates
  • Highly reliable because no two people have the same retinal pattern
  • Speedy results: Identity of the subject is verified very quickly

Disadvantages[9]

  • Measurement accuracy can be affected by a disease such as cataracts
  • Measurement accuracy can also be affected by severe astigmatism
  • Scanning procedure is perceived by some as invasive
  • Not very user friendly
  • Subject being scanned must be close to the camera optics
  • High equipment cost

See also

References

  1. ^ Retina and Iris Scans. Encyclopedia of Espionage, Intelligence, and Security. Copyright © 2004 by The Gale Group, Inc.
  2. ^ Cofta, Piotr; Furnell, Steven (2008). "Use of Biometric Data". Understanding Public Perceptions: Trust and Engagement in ICT-mediated Services. International Engineering Consortium. p. 153.  
  3. ^ Retinography: How Retinal Scanning Works. Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  4. ^ “Eye Prints,” TIME Magazine, Dec. 16, 1935. Retrieved on 2008-04-10.
  5. ^ "Why retina scanning works better for James Bond than it ever would for us". 
  6. ^ Iris/Retinal Identification. Wcu.Edu. Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  7. ^ Ostaff, Courtney. “Retinal Scans Do More Than Let You In The Door." Retrieved on 2007-04-02.
  8. ^ "Iris Recognition vs. Retina Scanning – What are the Differences?", M2SYS Blog on Biometric Technology.
  9. ^ Roberts, Chris. "Biometrics" Retrieved on 2009-06-11.
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.