Assignment Example on Automated Fingerprint Identification System

Paper Type:  Questions & Answers
Pages:  3
Wordcount:  609 Words
Date:  2022-06-19

Briefly describe how the automated fingerprint identification system creates an image.

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The automated fingerprint identification system has proved to be a secure system that assists in storage, searching and retrieval of fingerprints considering the increase in the collection of fingerprints. Before the introduction of the computerized fingerprinting system, the manual method was the convenient means of collecting and storage of fingerprints (Moses et al. 2011). The automated fingerprint identification system can scan fingerprints and digitally encode to make them the subjects of high-speed computer processing. The digital live scan device is used to collect fingerprints thus eliminating the outdated method that used paper and ink. The live scan captures the palms and each finger images by gently pressing against a glass pattern, and the images are electronically captured and sent to the automated fingerprint identification system database. The digital live scan in automatic fingerprint identification system helps to convert the fingerprint image to digital minutiae that keep data that shows fingerprint ridges at the area of termination or the ridge endings and branching of one fingerprint ridge into two ridges which are known as bifurcations.

The corresponding position and the start of the minutiae's are also determined to enable the computer to store the various fingerprints in a digital recorded geometric pattern. During a fingerprint search in automated fingerprint identification system, the computer uses a logarithm that shows the level of similarity between the location and level of relationship of the minutiae in both the file print and search file, in case of any similarity in the relationship and position the fingerprint is considered to match (Richard, 1990). During the process of search for a match of the fingerprint, the computer makes use of the scoring system that helps in assigning prints to every criterion that is set by the operator. When the computer completes the match, a list of file prints that have the closest match are produced. All the generated fingerprints match are then examined adequately by a well-trained fingerprint expert whose primary work is to make the final verification. The automatic identification system only helps to produce the prints that have similarities. While the examiner gives the conclusive result of the prints that match.

What characteristics does the automated fingerprint identification system record for comparison?

The automated fingerprint identification system has to record specific characteristics of the prints for storage to facilitate an efficient search of the matching prints in the database. Therefore during the initial stage of collecting the photographs in the live scan which are to be entered in the database one must ensure that the fingers and palm prints are well captured. The key characteristics obtained by the system include, first, the minutiae, which is the part of the fingerprint. Minutiae has the crucial data that shows ridges of the print at the point of termination or the ending and also the areas where there are branching of ridges forming two ridges also known as the bifurcations.

Secondly, the orientation and the relative position of the minutiae are also determined. This enables the computer to keep or store every fingerprint in a specific form of a digital recorded geometric pattern. Also during prints search, the computer assesses similarity between the positioning of the minutiae and the similarities of minutiae between the two search and the file print thus enabling the computer to attain thousands of search within few minutes.


Moses, K. R., Higgins, P., McCabe, M., Prabhakar, S., & Swann, S. (2011). Automated fingerprint identification system (AFIS). Scientific Working Group on Friction Ridge Analysis Study and Technology and National Institute of Justice (eds.) SWGFAST-The fingerprint sourcebook, 1-33.

Richard, S. (1990). Criminalistics: an introduction to forensic science.

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