Product Information

NEC TouchPass

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September 01, 2003
Vendor:

NEC U.K. Security Solutions

Product:

NEC TouchPass (Biometrics group test)

Website:

http://www.nec.co.uk/necnss.asp

Price

from around $159 per user

RATING BREAKDOWN

  • Features:
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  • Ease of Use:
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  • Performance:
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  • Documentation:
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  • Support:
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  • Value for Money:
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  • Overall Rating:
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QUICK READ

  • Strengths:

    Enterprise-class product, integration with Windows.

  • Weaknesses:

    Needs proper manuals.

  • Verdict:

    A good choice for a Windows based organization.

The NEC TouchPass system will appeal to systems administrators looking to integrate biometric verification into the organizational network access security routines.

It is designed for use within a Windows environment in a client-server configuration, thus there are separate software components for the server and clients.

The client software may be installed over the network using SMS push technology, if this is preferable for large organizations. The concept is one of integrating seamlessly into the Windows security environment. When adding new users or editing the profile of existing users, a TouchPass tab is available, which allows for fingerprint biometric enrolment. This works well and an opportunity to test the quality of enrollment before leaving the dialogue is provided. A graphical display helps with finger positioning and pressure at enrollment, helping users to understand how best to present their fingers for identity verification.

Each user may enroll multiple fingers if desired, and it is always good practice to enroll more than one. For access purposes, either a password or biometric or both may be used. If the biometric identity check fails, one can fall back on a password, although this may not be what is required for high security installations. It is also possible to enroll users remotely, via a special utility. This may be valuable for remote users who hardly ever visit base, although for most users a facilitated enrollment will of course tend to create more robust templates while giving users the chance to be properly trained.

The NEC Touchpass product is relatively simple in concept and execution, and will be fine for those seeking a biometric front end to the familiar Windows log-on routine. If anything more adventurous is required, as might very well be the case for a large organization, then bespoke solutions may be entertained and NEC will no doubt be pleased to discuss such possibilities. Indeed, we think this is where the NEC product fits most comfortably. It can work with a variety of fingerprint devices and might be integrated closely with operational software for specific functionality.

This is a product offering which might suit systems administrators and security managers who already have a very clear idea of what they want to achieve and how they might go about it. What they will need most of all is a suitable tool kit which helps them bring biometric functionality into this vision. NEC TouchPass will certainly be worthy of their consideration.

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