Just days ago, Security Magazine and Zalud’s Blog found that Privaris, a provider of personal, biometric identity verification solutions, announced the availability of its plusID 75, a multi-function personal identity verification token that leverages Bluetooth technology and ensures secure wireless logical access. plusID 75 is the latest addition to Privaris’ unique plusID product line designed to meet the growing market demand for a convenient, yet secure and cost-effective solution to today’s network access vulnerabilities. 

Wireless technology is in high demand and product shipments featuring Bluetooth technology are anticipated to hit one billion dollars this year, according to IMS Research News. With this in mind, Privaris has incorporated Bluetooth technology (2.45 GHz) with an added layer of encryption during data transmission for heightened security. This allows the plusID token to be used for secure wireless access to PCs, networks, and VPNs– supporting file encryption and secure email websites, file and software applications. 

Traditional approaches to network access security rely on user names and passwords, PINs, smart cards, or one-time password tokens, all of which can be lost, shared, stolen, or compromised, leaving networks susceptible to audit non-compliance and security breaches. But with plusID’s biometrics-based identity verification solutions, only the user’s unique physical attribute, their fingerprint, grants access to critical IT resources and data. Each plusID 75 personal token also supports logon via USB and physical access to secured buildings and facilities via low and high frequency RFID.

“The plusID 75 leverages the worldwide installed base of more than 1.5 billion Bluetooth-enabled PCs and other devices,” said Tim Kridel, an independent analyst who tracks the wireless industry for a variety of research firms. “By adding an extra layer of encryption to the Bluetooth link, the plusID 75 wisely and proactively addresses CIO and IT manager concerns about Bluetooth security. In the process, the plusID 75 provides enterprises with additional security options but without creating security risks of its own.”

The plusID 75 identifies itself to PCs and laptops exactly as a smart card does (via ISO 7816 compliance), allowing for a fast and simple upgrade to biometric logon with no additional middleware or equipment required. The solution also works with select single sign-on (SSO) software. These logical access capabilities reduce the administrative hassle and the expense of IT password management. Studies have shown that 40-60 percent of IT help desk calls pertain to password maintenance and that organizations can recognize substantial savings by eliminating password support calls. 

“Organizations have been struggling with network access security challenges for years, particularly with regard to combating inside hacker threats, mounting maintenance costs and employee pushback surrounding convenience and privacy issues,” said John Petze, President and CEO, Privaris. “Traditional approaches such as passwords and smart cards are expensive to manage, and in the case of smart cards, expensive to deploy because they require peripheral readers to be installed on every PC. With that in mind, we’ve developed a wireless identity-verification solution that combines the innovation and convenience of Bluetooth with the security and privacy of a personal biometrics-based token.” 

The plusID family of solutions is tamper-resistant and built to withstand digital and physical attack, providing secure access to multiple facilities, computers and networks, and adding the heightened security of biometrics through a convenient and cost-effective delivery model. plusID allows for rapid integration by working seamlessly with existing physical and logical security systems, and ensures personal privacy by performing all biometric processing, including matching, on the user's personal device rather than an external database – thereby eliminating the security issues surrounding lost or stolen cards and passwords.