8 Different Types of Fingerprints – Complete Analysis

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Verifying someone’s identity is an essential component of your security policy. You need protections in place to prevent hackers from penetrating your network and to deter unwanted visitors from accessing secure areas.

A security breach is incredibly costly — not only does it put your company, its stakeholders, and your customers at high risk, but it can also lead to costly fines for noncompliance and destroy the reputation of your business.

Fortunately, biometric access control helps protect businesses through various methods, including fingerprint scanning and facial recognition.


How Biometric Technology and Fingerprint Identification Works

Fingerprint scanning is one of the most common forms of biometric authentication. Fingerprints are unique to each person, and they’re consistent over an extended period of time.

It’s a popular choice for security measures because it’s easy to implement for a business, given its established use by law enforcement and other applications.

Fingerprint identification technology includes scanners that capture unique patterns. When you scan a fingerprint, the scanner creates an image of the ridges on the finger and converts it using a software that can then compare it to a list of registered fingerprints within a database.

When a match is verified, the person being scanned is granted access. On the other hand, when there is not a match, access is denied.

There are plenty of other forms of biometric authentication. For example, facial recognition involves a camera that takes an image of the individual’s face and compares it to a database of faces.

Like fingerprint scanning, facial recognition is widely adopted and considered more reliable than other methods of authentication, such as passwords.

Using biometric technology provides an extra layer of verification. It frees up the time your employees spend memorizing multiple passwords and decreases the risk of a security breach. Businesses can also enhance their level of security by combining biometric authentication with other methods, such as access cards.

To get a better understanding of how fingerprint authentication can benefit your business, it’s important to learn about the different types of fingerprints.

The 8 Types of Fingerprints

People have various types of fingerprints, including loops, whorls, and arches. Each type is unique and can be used to identify someone to grant them access to sensitive information and secure areas.


Loop Fingerprints

Loops are the most common type of fingerprint, accounting for around 60% to 70% of all prints. They are characterized by a circular or oval-shaped pattern.

The prints recurve to form a loop shape. There are three subcategories of loop fingerprints:

  • Radial Loops: Named after the radius bone, these loops join the hand on the same side as the thumb, flowing in a downward slope from the little finger toward the thumb.
  • Ulnar Loops: This name refers to the ulna bone. The loop has a circular pattern, running from the thumb toward the pinky.
  • Double Loops: As the name suggests, these loops have two separate loop formations and at least one recurving ridge within the inner pattern.


Whorl Fingerprints

Whorls are the second most common type of fingerprints, making up around 30% of all. They are characterized by a spiral-like pattern.

There are three different groups of whorl prints:

  • Plain Whorl: These include concentric circles, with one complete circle and two deltas.
  • Central Pocket Loop Whorl: This is a loop with a whorl at the end of it, which can be oval, spiral, or circular.
  • Accidental Whorl: As the name implies, this type is irregularly shaped.


Arch Fingerprints

Arches are the least common type of fingerprints, making up around 10% of all. They are characterized by a wave-like pattern. They occur in two different styles:

  • Plain Arch: The pattern starts on one side and slightly cascades in an upward direction.
  • Tented Arch: The arch lies in the center ridges and does not show a continuous arch.

As you can see, there are several types of fingerprints. And given the uniqueness and accessibility of fingerprints, the process of using fingerprint identification technology is easy and effective for enhancing the security protocols you have in place.

Explore Smart Eye’s Fingerprint Identification Technology

Biometric authentication systems are an ideal solution for businesses of all sizes to use to help protect their data and ward off intruders and criminals. With the use of advanced features in a security solution like facial and voice recognition and multi-factor biometric authentication, you can enjoy peace of mind knowing that access controls are in place.

Learn more about the Smart Eye Technology platform and how biometric technology like fingerprint recognition supports your security efforts. See it in action by booking a free demo or signing up for a 14 day free trial.

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