Identification, trust and privacy: how biometrics can aid certification of digital signatures

Michael Bromby

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Public key infrastructure (PKI) enables the secure and private exchange of data using an unsecure public network, such as the Internet. The use of paired private and public keys, issued by a trusted third-party authority, enables documents to be transferred securely and for the sender to be authenticated. The use of biometrics offers the potential to enhance considerably the PKI model in restricting the use of your private key for encryption and decryption. The use of a fingerprint, for example, can provide a higher level of confidence than the traditional password/PIN model. This provides the additional level of individual or personal authentification should a group of people have access to one key. The authentification of data, or a document, is often physically remote from the owner, especially for Internet-based communications. Conversely, traditional biometric usage has been to identity the physical presence of a person, for example for secure entry, or the receipt of information, or the receipt of goods.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-141
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Review of Law, Computers and Technology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2010


  • fingerprint
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