A mobile ID device is an untethered device used to capture one or more biometric samples from a subject. The captured data sample(s) may then be compared to other samples contained in a database resident on that device. The data may also be transmitted to and compared to samples in a central repository or an onboard computer repository located in a nearby vehicle. Such vehicles may include police cars, border patrol vehicles, military combat vehicles, etc. This scenario allows for comparison to larger databases than otherwise available on a handheld device or in a nearby vehicle.
Mobile ID devices have been employed for a variety of applications where a stationary collection environment is not possible or easily attainable. Applications include:
- The officer on the street or the soldier at a checkpoint who needs to perform a quick check against one or more biometric databases and/or watch‐lists
- Security at high profile, major public events, where fixed ID systems may not be practical or appropriate
- Issuance of a citation that requires registration of the biometric with the incident
- Enforcement of arrest warrants
- Verification of the identity of subjects at court appearances
- Access control for buildings, computers and networks, both for subjects seeking access as well as to authenticate the operator of the Mobile ID device itself
- Security involving prisoner transport and release tracking
- Immigration and border control
- Entitlement programs and job applications
- Monitoring activities and/or determining any interaction with known or suspected terrorists (known as KSTs)
These applications and others are being accomplished with on‐the‐spot acquisitions of fingerprints and/or “mug shots” for comparison with samples stored in key databases. Although iris comparison has not been identified as a current application for law enforcement applications, this technology is under consideration at some agencies and mobile enrollment of irises is already standard practice in many military scenarios.
There are several tasks to be accomplished by a biometric mobile ID device. The primary ones include signal or image capture, signal or image processing, matching, and ultimately, an output decision that indicates an action to be taken by the operator. This action is based on an application specific decision process.
The primary tasks of signal or image capture, signal or image processing, matching, and output decision generation can be performed by the Mobile ID device alone or by splitting the workload with a networked system. Factors influencing the operation of these functions include location, availability of network connectivity, bandwidth of the network connection and interoperability with other systems.