Privacy and resources threaten rapid biometric adoption

Fears over privacy and business budget restraints are two key areas that must be addressed if the biometric technology market is to swiftly grow globally, according to a new study.

The Global Border Control Biometrics Market Assessment analysis from business consultants Frost & Sullivan estimates the market could potentially reach in excess of $15.8 billion (£10.5 billion) in 2021, up from $5.8 million today.

However, the analysis warns that proving quantifiable returns on investment in order to implement biometrics in a company’s budget constraints is a major hurdle to seeing a rapid adoption of the technology.

In addition, privacy worries among the public were also highlighted as possibly having a negative impact on any increased roll-out of biometrics globally.

Krzysztof Rutkowski, Aerospace and Defence Research Analyst at Frost & Sullivan, claims better education on the benefits of biometrics will “definitely increase the awareness and acceptance of the technology”.

If organisations are able to successfully negotiate the budget and safety fears, the report outlines that increasing global co-operation on travel security issues means the biometrics market is capable of growing steadily over the coming years.

“Enhanced international collaboration related to travel security is pressuring governments to implement electronic documents and readers,” Rutkowski said. “This is an enabler for airports and border control agencies to become more efficient in their business-as-usual functions.”

The western markets are already commonly trialling ePassports and eGAtes – allowing passengers to automatically pass through immigration – and the likes of India and China are planning to implement such technology in the near future.

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