Suppression Of A Society Will Take Its Toll
Unless you have been living under the proverbial rock recently, chances are you caught wind of the unrest, protests and civic rebellions that are sweeping across the Middle East and Northern Africa. First, it was Tunisia then Egypt followed by Bahrain and now Libya. Countries that are fed up with oppression and living under the rule of dictatorships, oligarchies and autocratic rule are rising up and defying government power in an effort to force change, modernize their economies and provide citizens with a voice in their society.
For these countries and others crying out for change, demanding reform and putting the wheels in motion to make it happens it can be a frightening and anxious experience knowing that the actions they are taking are necessary and will pay tremendous dividends in the future but the short term implications can be difficult adjustments and fraught with uncertainty. However, these rebellions have been years in the making and whispered about clandestinely in social circles for many years. Revolt in Tunisia seemed to be the tipping point for the rest of these countries to follow suit and summon the courage to act themselves against their tyrannical regimes.
The Current And Future State Of Biometric Technology
The unrest in the Middle East and Northern Africa got us thinking about parallels that we can draw from these events to the biometric technology market. Modern biometric technology applications are revolutionary scientific breakthroughs in identification technology, with the ability to accurately identify an individual that is unsurpassed by any other identification technology on the market. It is currently being used in some capacity by countries all over the globe through a wide variety of governmental and commercial deployments.
From border security, workforce management, membership management, retail point of sale, public safety, healthcare to banking – biometrics is slowly permeating our lives to boost security, create efficiencies, improve productivity and save money (among many other benefits for applicable vertical markets). However, in certain countries, it is being rejected and questioned on the grounds that it violates individual privacy rights and the validity of capturing and storing biometric identification characteristics of an individual without any plausible governmental data collection guidelines and laws in place.
These are valid arguments and ones that should be debated and resolved for biometrics to be more readily accepted. However, these issues will not stop biometric technology from being the steam engine of future secure individual identification. It is inevitable that biometrics will become more widely adopted and replace identification technologies such as barcode cards, personal identification numbers (PINs) and RFID technology. There simply is no other technology that is neither comparable nor as convenient as biometrics.
Just as the citizens of countries spread out across the Middle East and Northern Africa are rebelling for change and a better way of life, businesses are using biometric technology to halt unscrupulous practices that are draining their profits and polluting their environments. Countries and companies across the globe are putting their foot down and saying, “Enough!” They are tired of seeing things like fraud, time theft, shrink and buddy punching sap their profits. They are seeking technological competitive advantages to increase operational efficiencies, establish accountability, build customer loyalty and achieve higher returns on investment in infrastructure. Businesses and governments are abandoning the old ways of identification, those archaic and administrative intensive Stone Age methodologies and beginning to adopt modern technologies that offer far more benefits.
While we could never understate the importance and impact of the events that are unfolding in the Middle East and Northern Africa, we can draw some interesting comparisons to the present state and how the future of biometric technology will unfold.
What do you think? Are there some similarities you can draw from the unrest in the Middle East and Northern Africa that you can compare to your market?