School cafeterias at Englewood launched their finger – imaging system for students. However, parents were abashed by this introduction saying that it was not properly discussed to them. There’s also the concern for privacy over the biometric data of students.
The schools launched this system in order to handle lunch hoax and students have to swipe and scan their fingers instead of using a personal identification number (PIN) code or identification card in order to get lunch. Also, the district was looking for the disbursements of $100,000 from the free and reduced – cost lunch program which caused the district to purchase these scanners.
The hardware and software for the finger – imaging system is known as “digitalPersona” from CrossMatch, a company that offers biometric identity enrollment and verification solutions. The said company also offers services to law enforcement agencies, government, military, retail and hospitality.
Parents and residents were concerned that the students have to swipe their fingers when they didn’t have to. An attorney said that biometric data are permanent and cannot be changed forever. That is why it concerned many parents and residents in the area. She also said that if these are not guarded well, it may result to an identity theft. A worst case scenario would be that a convicted criminal can avoid persecution by stealing the fingerprint data.
According to the school’s business administrator, Cheryl Balletto, the identification process may differ school to school. However, one thing is the same– the information regarding students’ fingerprints remain within the school district and that they hard to forge and duplicate it.