Monday, 6 April 2009

Spoof Proof?

Two American 'researchers' have come up with an alternative to conventional biometric security systems based on iris and fingerprint scans which they claim will provide greater resistance to "spoofing".

X-Ray photographs of the knee.

No, I kid ye not. X-Ray photographs of the knee.

I realise this might seem a bit ridiculous, and somewhat risky considering that the medical profession has spent the past twenty or more years telling us that X-Rays are dangerous. However there are potential benefits in addition to increased 'spoof' resistance.

Passports and other identification documents would contain an embedded dosimeter which would require checking and replacement every year generating an additional revenue stream for the passport office and the nuclear medicine support industries.

It would stimulate the employment market by forcing early retirement for those who had reached their lifetime exposure limit.

The domestic holiday market would benefit by discouraging people from taking holidays abroad and by forcing those who do to remain in this country after they reach their exposure limit.

Border security would be enhanced by making those who regularly travel using falsified documents easily detectable due to residual radiation. The worst offenders could be identified by the fairly obvious signs of radiation sickness or simply by switching off the lights and looking to see who glows in the dark.

The domestic garment industry would experience a resurgence as the demand for protective underwear such as lead-lined y-fronts and corsets increased. Men with certain 'cultural' prejudices would require additional layers of lead foil to protect their precious 'manhood'. This would result in a characteristic nappy-like bulge allowing underage girls and women who prefer their eggs unfertilised to avoid them like the plague.

A small but profitable sideline would also exist in providing lead-lined boxer shorts for American visitors - no true Englishman would be caught dead wearing such a ridiculous garment.

Naturally Dover would be at the front of such technological innovations and the sight of passport control officers in radiation-proof protective clothing would quickly become common place as would the bluish glow from the vicinity of passport control.

Seriously though, this is not a new idea. Previous studies of similar methodologies concluded that the serious health risks associated with X-Ray radiation were an insurmountable problem and strange as it may seem, one of this pair actually works for the US National Institutes of Health. What precise capacity isn't specified but I sincerely hope it's not a medical one.

Oh and by the way - it doesn't work...

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