Soft biometrics-combining body weight and fat measurements with fingerprint biometrics

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

61 Citations (Scopus)


The aim of this study was to examine whether using soft biometrics, i.e. easily measurable personal characteristics, such as weight and fat percentage, can improve the performance of biometrics in verification type applications. Fusing fingerprint biometrics with soft biometrics, in this case body weight measurements, decreased the total error rate (TER) from 3.9% to 1.5% in an experiment with 62 test subjects. This result shows that simple physiological measurements can be used to support biometric recognition. Furthermore, soft biometrics are unobtrusive, there is no risk of identity theft, the perception of the big-brother effect is small, the equipment needed is low-cost, and the methods are easy to understand. Soft biometrics alone are not suitable for security related applications, but they can be used for improving the performance of traditional biometrics. A potentially feasible use for soft biometrics may be found in non-security, convenience type cases, such as domestic applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-334
Number of pages10
JournalPattern Recognition Letters
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2006
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Biometrics
  • Body fat percentage
  • Body weight
  • Fingerprint
  • Fusion
  • Identification
  • Multimodal
  • Soft biometrics

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