HOW DOES THE FINGERPRINT SCANNER WORK?
If anything is really going to fail on these systems, it’s the fingerprint scanner itself. So how do they work?
Fingerprint scanners have a few responsibilities. When you first scan your finger, the scanner takes a visual input of the different peaks and valleys of your fingerprint. Every single fingerprint is completely unique. Your fingerprints will be different than everybody else’s and even your own other fingers.
Once the scanner has developed this topographical map of your fingers, it converts this image into a series of numbers. This series is then stored within the electronic memory of the scanner to allow operation of the lock. If that same string of number is inputted back in the system (i.e. it scans your finger again), the lock mechanism is actuated and unlocked.
Pretty simple, right? Well, it is in theory anyway. But there a huge number of things that can happen that will affect the operation.
First, let’s start with dirty hands. Dirty hands can keep you locked out of your safe. If some of your prints peaks and valleys are smudged with dirt, a different set of numbers could be produced–barring you out of your safe. A dirty scanner could do the same. Placing a finger down on a dirty surface could cause misreads and you stuck on the outside. Keep your fingerprint scanner clean with some appropriate cleaning solutions and cotton swabs to minimize fingerprint fails.
Another reason your safe could fail is if you have in anyway changed your fingerprints. If you’ve burned, cut, or otherwise mangled your fingers and their prints… you may not have access into your vault. Even taking too long in the shower or pool could affect the operation of the scanner. Pruny fingers can provide different ridges, thus different numbers strings and denied access.