DigitalPersona Updates Fingerprint Authentication Technology

DigitalPersona will offer a free upgrade to DigitalPersona Pro 3.2 for the next few weeks, said David Baker, senior director of worldwide channels at the Redwood City, Calif.-based vendor. The company estimates that there are about 500,000 DigitalPersona fingerprint units installed worldwide. One of its biggest partners is Microsoft, which is an OEM for the product, and DigitalPersona claims customers such as the Department of Defense and Rite Aid Pharmacies.

"Users really like to adopt this new technology because it's one of the few security implementations that makes their lives easier and that makes them more productive," said Jeff Foresman, practice director for security solutions at the Indianapolis office of Sarcom, one of DigitalPersona's roughly 20 Premier partners.

New features in the DigitalPersona Pro 3.2 client/server software include support for multifactor authentication solutions, which call for more than one type of authentication method. For example, a smart card login also might require a fingerprint as a secondary form of identification. Such support is important for government installations, said Vance Bjorn, CTO and co-founder of DigitalPersona.

DigitalPersona also made changes to the product's One-Touch Sign-On function, making it easier for VARs to enable users to sign in to more than one application with a single fingerprint authentication. The software supports all standard Windows applications, mainframe applications, VPN clients (including those from Cisco Systems and Check Point Software Technologies) and Citrix Systems clients. It also supports Web-based applications, including the Microsoft Office suite, Lotus Notes, FileMaker Pro, Yahoo Messenger and Adobe Acrobat Reader.

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Foresman said the updated edition simplifies the process of setting up access to multiple applications. "It's easier to deploy in large environments," he said.

Other updates to the software include improved fingerprint recognition, changes to the user interface and enhanced language support.

DigitalPersona Pro 3.2 carries a list price of $149 for a USB-connected sensor with the workstation software, and a keyboard version lists for $199. The back-end server software starts at $1,499 for 25 users, and additional user licenses cost $50 per person.