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Iridian Technologies, Inc. November 13, 2001

SUMMARY OF PROPOSED TESTIMONY

Senate Judiciary Committee
Sub-Committee on Technology, Terrorism, and Government Information
Chairperson: Senator Diane Feinstein

Representing Iridian Technologies: William Willis, Chief Technology Officer

Iridian Technologies, Inc. (Iridian) is the developer of iris recognition technology, a superior biometric authenticator that performs either verification or identification of a claimed identity. Identification is accomplished by a complete search of a database using a mathematical representation created from the image of the iris in the human eye. Images of the iris, the colored ring around the pupil, are acquired by a camera at a comfortable distance, and converted by algorithm into a secure IrisCode. This IrisCode is used as a template for comparison when a new eye is presented for authentication. Iris recognition technology is totally distinct from an earlier and unrelated approach, retinal scanning. Retinal scanning relies on an active laser probing inside the eye to view the retina at the back of the eye. Iris recognition uses the external colored part of the eye via a simple photographic image.

Numerous third party studies [available upon request] have confirmed that the iris is the most-information rich biometric. Iridian Technologies has developed proprietary technology to take advantage of the natural characteristics of the human iris to produce products that support both physical security and information security applications. Iris recognition was in development from the mid-80's, and its first products for physical security were deployed in 1996. The technology is widely deployed today for physical security in corporate America and the government. New imaging products from major manufacturing partners of Iridian Technologies have created a situation where the products are ready for deployment on a large scale.

Iris recognition is a natural identification component of anti-terrorist security systems. It is capable of high-speed, real-time, extremely accurate operations in very large data base environments such as Immigration and Border security, National Transportation system security, information network protection, and access control for security of critical infrastructure assets. Examples of scalable deployments include Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam Netherlands, Heathrow Airport, London United Kingdom, and Douglas International Airport, Charlotte North Carolina.

The tragedies of September 11 have made us all keenly aware of the fragility of our nation's infrastructures. Iris recognition technology can rebalance the equation of open access and controlled access without sacrificing the rights of privacy and free movement in our society. Americans now understand that it is in the country's interest to manage access to America's infrastructure by applying technology in a way that is efficient, reliable, and trustworthy. Iridian Technologies stands ready to make its innovative products available to achieve these ends.