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Internet, XBRL, Biometrics & our Profession
06-30-2003, 05:39 AM
Post: #1
Internet, XBRL, Biometrics & our Profession
This post is just for the sake of interested readers who may not be understanding about the term 'Biometrics'..... Please note that I'm not here to teach others or prove something but just to 'share' the info with the learned ones out there at this forum.....
'Biometrics' is the sort of next-generation (at least in Pakistan) of 'Identity & authorisation Technologies'. Since authorisation and approval is most important aspect in 'Auditing' so these technologies are making fast ways into our profession. There are many technologies (already in practice) in the world like...
1. Hand Print;
2. Iris or Ratina Scan;
3. Face Recognition;
4. Voice Recognition and
5. DNA Test etc. etc.
Now, How do these technologies fit into our profession????? Please read the followings and just have a deep thought about future of our profession
a) Electronically generated vouchers would be recorded & posted online. Those would not be 'Physically' signed but would be having an approval mark of 'Thumb Impression' or 'Any other part of hand print' converted into a 'Digital Signature';
b) Online fund transferring or transaction authorisation would be done only when a 'Iris Scan' gadget at your Desktop, scans your Ratina, to allow you access for authorisation;
c) Imagine..... that you're an auditor sitting in your office and intend to audit a certain class of transactions of any of your client..... you click to login to your client's system..... your camera sends your face's image with all structural features to your client's system, which is compared through their software with the iamge saved in their datawarehouse.....and you're logged in.... obviously if you've got a swollen eye or cheek..... you'll never be able to.... This is face Recognition.... similarly is the case with "Voice/Speech' Recognition"..... but in this case please take care that someone doesn't use your recorded voice to manipulate the data....
d) Extreme Case Access..... suppose you can't leave Karachi but you have to sign a document in a distant part of the World..... a tiny needle in a gadget at your desktop would take a sample of your blood, record it's DNA Test and would allow you an 'Access' to the area where nobody can get but you.....
All of the above technologies, coupled with more and more governance rules by the regolators & demands of investors would require publishing of operating results of the companies within (may be) Two weeks of closure of any accounting period. XBRL would enable those results to be published online all over the world within hours of release of such results.
MAY BE... to many of the readers above mentioned situation could be a scene from any science fiction movie... but MY DEARS!!! it's lready been started in the world.....
Please also remember all future technologies are spreading more and more fastly..... Electricity took (perhaps) 70 years... Radio took almost 50 years and internet took less than 20 years to spread all over the world....
Any comments from the learned ones?????

Edited by - TheOne on Jun 30 2003 124638 AM
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07-12-2003, 02:14 AM
Post: #2

hand print or finger printing is an old technology, however very reliable. It is said that even twins do not share the same finger print. However, today's technological advances in biosciences have rendred skin grafts possible which can retain finger prints. Further, due to increased dissipation of finger print data especially in countries where there is massive illiteracy, it can easily be stolen from government records. Therefore these can result in identity thefts if used alone as a control procedure.

IRIS scan refers to scanning the eye and recording the minute sutleties of the structure. it is a good control as it is also believed to be a unique id. However, if eyes can be taken out and implanted which can again result in identity theft and serious control issues.

On the face of it, it is a pretty secure method. However, recent advances in digital photography... resulting in high definition photographs, holography..... resulting in high defintion 3D space replication, and plastic surgery....... resulting in ... face off ) can make these technology very weak and pregnable.

It may be good for operating electronic gadgets and trying dictating something to a voice-enabled software, this technology is least secure. Even as we speak, freely available amateur software can mimic sounds of another person with flawless precision. It is simply a non-starter.

scientific advances have lead to disovery of genes and human genetic structure in the form of DNA. Each person is considered to be unique as the possibility of a match is considered unique. However, twins born of the same embryo are supposed to carry the same DNA.
However DNA has its own problems. We lose hundreds of hairs daily from our body and ... rather make available to others our identity... cloning will be the weapon of choice for potential fraudsters and theives. Even stealing blood of a person will make identity theft possible and blood banks a potential target.

I agree with your view point on technology taking hold of our daily lives faster than we might think...... talking in terms of developed world...but the above raises a very important question....... which is IDENTITY THEFT

to recognise the problem already quite grown out ... not because of above... but rather like using credit cards and using forged documents etc..... the state of new york and several other states have put in place identity theft legislation.... im not sure how much it incorporates biometrics..

so my friend the issue for auditors of the future is not fraud per se..... its identity theft which will lead to further problems.
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07-13-2003, 09:12 AM
Post: #3
Nice 'Digging'.....
What you did agree me with is the 'ID Theft'... ok?????
if yes then what's afterall verified during any audit other than an "ID Theft"????? (meaning the 'ID' of legality', 'ID' of signature, 'ID' of authorisation or 'ID' of approval????? Do you think that 'ID' means only the 'ID of a "Natural Person" and do you also think the "Law" hasn't got any 'ID'???
And don't you think that actually 'Biometrics' is simply a tool to curb the 'ID Theft'(rather than a source to verify the 'ID')...!!??? Isn't it so?????
Please rethink, probably you may agree 100% with me... Don't you??
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