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January 14, 2015 - Introduction The term “biometrics” is derived from the Greek words “bio” (life) and “metrics” (to measure).

The concept of human-to-human recognition is also seen in behavioral-predominant biometrics such as speaker and gait recognition.

Individuals use these characteristics, somewhat unconsciously, to recognize known individuals on a day-to-day basis.

Other characteristics have also been used throughout the history of civilization as a more formal means of recognition.

Some examples are: • In a cave estimated to be at least 31,000 years old, the walls are adorned with paintings believed to be created by prehistoric men who lived there.

This system, called the Henry System, and variations on it are still in use for classifying fingerprints.

True biometric systems began to emerge in the latter half of the twentieth century, coinciding with the emergence of computer systems.

1894 – The Tragedy of Pudd’nhead Wilson is published In The Tragedy of Pudd’nhead Wilson, author Mark Twain mentions the use of fingerprints for identification.

In the story, a man on trial calls on the comparison of his fingerprints to those left at the crime scene to prove his innocence.

This was the first recorded systematic capture of hand and finger images that were uniformly taken for identification purposes.

1870 – Bertillon develops anthropometries to identify individuals Alphonse Bertillon developed “Bertillonage” or anthropometries, a method of identifying individuals based on detailed records of their body measurements, physical descriptions and photographs.

The nascent field experienced an explosion of activity in the 1990s and began to surface in everyday applications in the early 2000s.