Chapter 11Performance Evaluation of Biometric Systems 1



11.1. Introduction

Biometrics is an emerging technology for the authentication or identification of individuals. Generally, the evaluation of a biometric system is carried out by following four approaches: (1) performance evaluation, (2) evaluation of the quality of the biometric data, (3) security evaluation, and (4) usability evaluation.

As opposed to the use of a static password (which represents the most widespread method of authentication), biometrics can produce verification or recognition errors even when we consider biometric data from the same person during verification phase. These errors are due to a bad management of the biometric sensor, to artifacts linked to the capture environment (overexposed scene during facial recognition, for example) or linked to the individual (difficulty in capturing the fingerprint of an individual for medical reasons). For these reasons, the performance evaluation of biometric systems is absolutely necessary (failure-to-acquire rate of the biometric data, verification error rate, etc.).

Furthermore, the enrollment phase is a fundamental step in the lifecycle of a biometric system. It consists of generating from one or more data captures a reference model representing the biometric data of an individual. To maximize the ulterior performances of the biometric system, it is necessary to have a biometric reference of optimal quality of the considered individual. There exist several ...

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