Handheld Security

With "biometric" devices, you can forget about forgotten passwords--and stolen ones, too. These gizmos identify people by distinctive markers such as fingerprints. Now, Advanced Biometrics Inc. has come up with a new security technology that it's marketing initially to small companies. Called LiveGrip, it uses infrared scanners to map the arteries and veins of a person's hand, then matches the analysis against a database of prescanned hand images. For workers, LiveGrip technology might feel less threatening than a retinal scan, and it may be harder to fool than other recognition systems. The first LiveGrip product is ChronoLog, a $2,995 time clock, being sold to restaurants, retailers, and other small businesses whose hourly workers often punch in for each other.

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