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U.S. Army looks to move biometrics to the cloud


The U.S. Army’s Intelligence Command has awarded a sole-source contract to bring data to the cloud, and a part of that project includes biometric data.

Reported first in Wired, according to a description of the contract, the project “involves the Entity management and tracking system for Biometrics/Human Terrain Facial recognition capability (photos, video) and edge-to-Cloud Enterprise Messaging (Corps/Division Node to/from Handheld.)”

Considering the sensitivity of biometric data, cloud storage is murky waters for the industry, as there are many people who believe hacks and data breaches are significant threats.

As the Wired report notes, “the obvious worry for any effort like this, aside from bandwidth, is going to be data security. Military cloud storage is still in its infancy.”

That being said, there are clear reasons why the Army would want to store this information in the cloud (think – consolidating collection efforts, widening access to other departments, device interoperability as well as space and processing limitations).

Despite these advantages, huge, seemingly-secured servers and databases are breached constantly, and replacing a finger is nothing like applying for a new credit card number.

The work for this new project is set to begin in August, 2013.

Where do you sit on the biometrics-in-the-cloud debate? Is it safe to store this data in the cloud? Let us know in the comments.  


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2 Replies to “U.S. Army looks to move biometrics to the cloud”

  1. The skeptics are right to be worried about biometrics in the cloud. These data are different than other data. As you note in your article, replacing a finger is nothing like applying for a new credit card number! At BluStor we believe there is a safer way to store and access biometric data for ID authentication: BluStor high-capacity, Bluetooth-enabled smart card platform. It works like any other smart card, and is totally backward compatible, but it is an order of magnitude more capable. It gives large organizations (like the US Army) a secure, convenient way to restrict access to their systems without inconveniencing their mobile users, and more accurately track and analyze mobile usage. Learn more at http://www.blustor.com.

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