Indien har byggt upp världens största biometriska databas

World’s largest biometric database

In the last two years, over 200 million Indian nationals have had their fingerprints and photographs taken and irises scanned, and given a unique 12-digit number that should identify them everywhere and to everyone.
This is only the beginning, and the goal is to do the same with the entire population (1.2 billion), so that poorer Indians can finally prove their existence and identity when needed for getting documents, getting help from the government, and opening bank and other accounts.
This immense task needs a database that can contain over 12 billion fingerprints, 1.2 billion photographs, and 2.4 billion iris scans, can be queried from diverse devices connected to the Internet, and can return accurate results in an extremely short time.
The program – dubbed UIDAI – is lead by techno tycoon Nandan Nilekani, and is already a big success, as its effectiveness has been proved by a number of trials that allowed citizens to open bank accounts electronically, receive payments from the government directly into them, and withdrawing the money from them by authenticating themselves on a slew of simple devices.
According to BBC’s Saritha Rai, the database in question has an open source backbone, and it’s not locked into any specific hardware or software. The collected information – stored in a data centre in Bangalore – is secured by multiple layers of security, and it is transmitted to and from the database in encrypted form.
The 12-digit number each individual is assigned is unique and random, so it can’t be guessed. And the combination of photo, fingerprints of all ten hand fingers and iris scans of both eyes makes it practically impossible for someone not to get identified or to get identified as another person, especially after the three planned de-duplication checks are executed.
Using the latest biometric, cloud computing and connection technologies, this program is likely to become a great example for future ones dealing with even larger databases.

Identifiering av krutrester i avfyrad ammunition

New Forensic Method Could Help Police Solve Crimes

Jun 05, 2012

Forensic researchers at Florida International Univ. have developed a groundbreaking method that can tie a shooter to the ammunition used to commit a crime, giving law enforcement agencies a new tool to solve cases.

Through research funded by the National Institute of Justice and recently published in the Journal of Forensic Sciences, chemistry Prof. Bruce McCord and doctoral candidate Jennifer Greaux discovered a new technique that identifies the chemical signature of the powder inside a bullet. This unique process can potentially link a suspect to the ammunition fired even if the weapon is not found.

The discovery comes at a time when the conventional method of analyzing gunshot residue is in danger of becoming less reliable, as weapon manufacturers remove lead — one of the three principle elements analyzed today — from their ammunition.

“Crime labs all over the country are faced with the reality that their only way to analyze whether a gun was fired by a suspect may become obsolete,” said McCord, a former forensic analyst for the FBI. “Our discovery is not only more accurate, but it can determine the type of gunpowder used in a crime even if the gun is never recovered.”

Currently, crime labs test the gunshot residue collected from a suspect’s hands and clothes for three elements, barium, lead and antimony. If that residue tests positive for all three and the particles have the correct shape, detectives conclude that their suspect either fired a weapon, held a weapon that had been recently fired or was near a weapon that was fired. But doubt remains — and if a weapon is never recovered from the scene, detectives have no way of using the residue to tie the ammunition to a suspect.

McCord and Greaux’s discovery changes all that.

Instead of testing for just three elements, the scientists focus on the smokeless powder that is found inside bullets to determine their chemical composition. Since each manufacturer has its own specific “recipe” for their smokeless powder, the process in essence defines the type of residue left behind.

“It’s easy to commit a crime,” said J. Graham Rankin, a professor of forensic science at Marshall University and fellow at the American Academy of Forensic Science. “This type of research is making it harder to get away with it.”

Source: Florida International Univ.