SmartMetric launches biometric USB keyring for medical information

November 16, 2012 - 

SmartMetric, a developer of biometric cards, has released a new biometric product, in the form of a USB keyring for storing medical records and information, activated by a fingerprint.

Speaking from the company’s manufacturing centre in Buenos Aires, Argentina, company CEO and president Chaya Hendrick, described the new device – Medical Keyring – as a plug and play option that will allow doctors instant access to valuable medical information.

SmartMetric has released similar card-based products in the past, but what sets the Medical Keyring apart is that it has on-board software, allowing doctors to access its information without the use of enterprise software, and this new product is being marketed to consumers to carry with them at all times.

If a patient is unconscious then the device has an emergency on/off switch that will display the person’s medical condition, medication they’re taking as well as quantities. Also included is blood-type information, allergies and any other important medical information to assist a Doctor in providing immediate life-saving treatment.

Once the patient has been stabilized, they can swipe their finger on the medical keyring and hand it over to the Doctor, who can now access the patient’s complete medical history.

An obvious concern is that if people are carrying around their entire medical history with them at all times, they are prone to be lost, along with all of their medical information. The benefit to the SmartMetric Medical Keyring is that it only works when authenticated by the user’s fingerprint.

“If the Medical Keyring is lost, then it is useless in the hands of a ‘bad’ person,” Hendrick said.
Hendrick developed the keyring device after her own serious bout of bacterial pneumonia brought a need to have medical records travel with her from one medical specialist to another, eWeek reports.

Additionally, Hendrick suggests a biometric keyring, or distributed database could be less susceptible to hacking patient data than a central platform in the cloud.

“Losing a thumb drive that is biometric-protected and is only operated after a fingerprint match is completed is far more secure than a central database,” Hendrick said. “The cloud is inherently unsafe. No one would trust having their medical records floating around.”

Let us know: Would you feel safe carrying your medical records on you at all times if they were fingerprint-secured?

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About Adam Vrankulj

Adam Vrankulj is an editor for His background consists of online news writing, editing and content marketing. Adam has written for, BlogTO and was the editor and curator for the nextMEDIA and CIX Source publications. He has a degree in journalism and is passionate about science, technology and social innovation. Contact Adam, or follow him at @adamvrankulj