Decades ago, science-fiction classics like “Star Trek” and “The Fifth Element” imagined how face-scanning technology might be used to verify one’s identity. And they weren’t far off.
Today, facial scanning — better known as facial recognition — is replacing digital keys, codes, and cards for access to locations, devices, and information. So even if the word “biometric” evokes a fear of Space-Odyssey levels of complexity, trust us. It’s pretty simple.
Biometric literally equates to “life” (bio) and “measure” (metric). In other words, it’s the process of identifying the features that make all living things unique. Even mushrooms can be de-capped and laid spores-down on special paper to reveal their unique print. For humans, our eyes, our fingerprints, and the geometry of our faces are a few identifying elements of our biology, as they are considered distinct and differentiating features.
It’s clear that fear of the unknown grows at pace with technology. TSheets recently surveyed 500 US adults to figure out what they know about biometrics.* Turns out, only 1 in 10 knows fingerprint scans, retina and iris scans, DNA tests, handprint geometry, and photographs of faces all contain biometric data.
Due to (or in spite of) the fact that few respondents were aware of the different methods for collecting biometric data, there was still a great deal of hesitation when the subject of using the technology came up.
Nearly half of our respondents said they would not feel comfortable using biometric data for activities like applying for a passport, unlocking their phones, going through airport security, acquiring a driver’s license, clocking in at work, or accessing their workplace.
But 1 in 3 says they’d use a fingerprint scanner to unlock their phones. And another third of respondents who don’t mind biometrics say they’d be ok using the technology for passport applications. As we get better acquainted with biometrics in our everyday lives, people are beginning to recognize its ease of use and feel more comfortable using it.
In a general sense, facial recognition is when a computer remembers the geometry of a face and can recognize it. Essentially, your unique facial features are used to verify your identity the same way a fingerprint scanner would.
The TSheets Time Clock Kiosk uses facial recognition to detect who is clocking in for, and out from, a job. But don’t worry! Employees are never blocked from clocking in or out. Instead, our facial recognition software snaps a photo of each employee and compares it to previous photos.
If the latest photo doesn’t look quite right, it is flagged and your company’s TSheets admin receives an email notification. That’s it! Employees can clock in and out without disruption, and if an employee isn’t who they say they are, an admin will know immediately and can manage the issue however they see fit.
Enabling facial recognition on a time clock is especially useful for preventing buddy punching, or employees clocking in for one another. And it’s great for large companies with hundreds of employees or businesses with temporary or seasonal employees, as admins may not have the ability to put a face to every name.
So let TSheets facial recognition bring your sci-fi dreams to life. Our technology takes care of employee verification, and it makes clocking in and out that much more secure.
*Methodology: TSheets commissioned Google Surveys to discover how 500 US residents, aged 18 and over, feel about biometrics.