Hitachi, Ltd. has developed a highly-accurate finger vein authentication technology using a camera commonly integrated in the standard smartphone. The technology enables the use of biometric authentication using finger vein patterns to be available as a personal identification method for smartphone transactions such as online shopping, providing higher security and accuracy as well as preventing unauthorized use.
Hitachi has developed image analysis and authentication technologies to realize finger vein authentication on smartphones.
Image processing technology was developed using the color information of the fingers to emphasize the color of the finger veins in the image captured by the smartphone camera without using a dedicated sensor with near infra-red light. As a result, it is possible to reliably extract finger vein pattern information and distinguish information from skin surface creases which easily change.
In aaddition, a technology was developed to compensate for positioning and inclination of the fingers by using actual images to identify the shape and color of fingers so that only information from the finger area is extracted from the camera image. This raises the degree of freedom in finger position and angle. Further, by authenticating several different fingers at the same time greater security and higher accuracy can be achieved.
Hitachi tested the new technology in house and calculated its authentication accuracy. Specifically, the company verified that the technology correctly authenticates registered people and that it does not authenticate people that have not been registered. The company carried out the former test about 1,000 times and the latter test about 15,000 times, but no error occurred.
For the evaluation results announced this time, Hitachi used VGA images taken by an 8-Mpixel camera. Though the technology was realized with Android, the company plans to support iOS at the time of commercialization.
The advantage of finger vein authentication is the characteristics used for biometric identification are in vivo, thus making it more difficult to forge or spoof compared to other biometric methods such as fingerprint, facial recognition or voiceprint.
In future, Hitachi will combine this new technology with security solutions such as encryption.
Hitachi' new technology was exhibited at the "Hitachi Social Innovation Forum 2016 TOKYO," which was held on the 27th and 28th of October 2016 in Tokyo, Japan