Biometrics as the sole guarantor of someone’s identity is a daft and broken idea, despite what our nodding dog of a Home Secretary has to say on the subject. As if further proof were needed, the German Interior Minister lost his fingerprints to the Chaos Computer Club, and now No2ID are offering a £1,000 reward for the fingerprints of Gordon Brown or Nodding Dog.
Herr Schauble now has a somewhat plausible defence if his fingerprints turn up at the scene of a crime somewhere, and no doubt Brown and Smith’s Special Branch bodyguards will now have crockery collection added to their list of tasks when protecting our Glorious Leaders.
Which got me wondering - if enough people were to put their fingerprints into the public domain (or at least the information needed to create artificial fingerprints, as per the Chaos Computer Club procedure), would this poison the value of fingerprints as a biometric identifier? If I could point to an online and freely-accessible database that contained my fingerprint data, could I then turn around and claim that while you think that those are my fingers, they might equally belong to somebody’s who’s made themselves their own pair?