Luzerne County controller says Kronos biometric time system allows ‘buddy punching’

December 17, 2012 - 

A fault in a biometric workforce management solution from Kronos Inc., has allowed buddy scanning in a Luzerne County, Pennsylvania government office, based on the county controller’s test reports.

The problem arises as the system appears to accept the wrong finger scan, allowing other workers to clock absentee co-workers in and out of the county’s biometric time system.

In the system, workers must enter their personal employee code into a device and then wait until the system accepts their finger scan verifying their identity. Though, as county controller Walter Griffith discovered last week, employees can clock other workers in and out if they have their colleagues’ personal employee codes and act quickly after their own log-in.

As the article outlines, after an employee enters their own code and finger scan, they can immediately enter the code of another colleague not in the building and the system will accept the scanning employees finger scan under the absent employee’s pin code.’s calls for an official statement from head office were un-returned.

Luzerne County manager Robert Lawton said this is a new problem, and the administration will have to investigate its cause to determine if it can be fixed through programming.

According to the article, the country has spent nearly $700,000 on the Kronos system and related data hosting services and this purchase is being funded with money previously borrowed through bonds for capital projects.

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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