Using different types of biometrics in the workplace is not just a trend, it’s a smart business decision that helps organizations of all sizes control costs, increase efficiencies, and enhance safety and security.

Using Employees’ Biometric Data

Biometric data gathers unique, quantifiable biological or behavioral characteristics, such as the following:

  • Fingerprints
  • Voice
  • Hand geometry
  • Eye scans
  • Facial recognition

Organizations use biometric information mainly for one of two reasons: identification, and/or authentication. In a number of workplaces, finger, retina, or facial biometrics are the keys by which different workers can enter certain areas, log in and out of workstations, and clock out for the day.

In the modern workforce, the use of employee biometrics is on the rise.

One recent survey suggests that up to 6% of U.S. companies track their workers via biometrics, and more than 60% of organizations are using biometric technology to authenticate employees in workplace settings. As these technologies continue to become ubiquitous with the workday, many employees don’t even think twice about using biometric readers. And, as costs come down, usage numbers will continue to expand.

Employers know that biometrics can help solve issues related to security, and also improve their bottom lines. However, using biometrics can open some organizations up to risks of litigation related to privacy issues, and workers’ rights. We’ll take a look at the current legal landscape for the use of biometric data below, along with a few ways that Icon Time’s biometric time clock, the TotalPass B600, is designed to help organizations avoid legal risks.

More and more employers count on biometric data to help create a more secure and efficient workplace. Icon Time’s TotalPass B600 helps ensure 100% employee ID verification on every punch, making it a powerful time and attendance solution that can solve your workplace’s time, attendance, and safety needs.

Learn more about our automated time clock solutions

Biometrics and the Legal Landscape

Right now, a growing number of states have laws in place that are meant to regulate the type of biometric data employers can gather and use. The emphasis with such laws is to help address and support employee privacy concerns, and to account for the fact that if an individual’s unique biometric information is compromised, then it is no longer a secure identifier.

Among laws currently on the books, many see Illinois’ Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA) as being the strictest when it comes to collecting and using biometric data. Some of the law’s specifics include the following restrictions and safeguards:

  • A private entity cannot collect or store biometric data without first alerting employees, obtaining written consent, and making other key disclosures.
  • Entities must develop a written policy that establishes a schedule and guidelines related to how data is retained and destroyed.
  • Employers are restricted from selling or profiting from biometric data they collect.
  • And, employers must protect biometric data using the reasonable standards of care within their respective industries, in a manner that is as protective, or more protective, than the manner in which they protect other sensitive information.

What does it mean for using biometrics data to help solve your time and attendance challenges?

Organizations understand that biometric tools and devices, such as the TotalPass B600 fingerprint biometric time clock, can help create a more secure and precise way to authenticate employee identification when clocking in and out. Being able to track time and attendance more accurately is one of the main reasons why organizations in all industries continue to choose the TotalPass B600.

When your organization chooses the TotalPass B600 for time and attendance needs:

  • You can eliminate buddy punching, and other types of time theft.
  • You can ensure that employees are who they say they are when they clock in, or switch job tasks.
  • You can enhance security and safety measures by tracking and ensuring which employees are on a jobsite and when.

With regards to accuracy, legal concerns, or issues related to the security of your employees’ biometric data, the TotalPass B600:

  • Utilizes a maintenance-free fingerprint sensor that resists scratches, electro-static discharge, corrosion and other stresses – delivering consistent performance in indoor, outdoor, hot, cold and other harsh environments.
  • Does not store a raw image of employees’ fingerprints, but a digital representation of specific characteristics of each fingerprint.
  • Uses secure algorithms to store fingerprint information for onsite and remote workers.
  • Keeps information safe from hackers, due to the fact that actual fingerprints are not retrievable.

It’s clear that the days of paper timecards are at an end. When a physical time clock is still the best solution for your workplace, the TotalPass B600 provides an advanced, biometric solution to your time and attendance needs—complete with an innovative way to use fingerprint recognition for your onsite and remote workforce. The TotalPass B600 can help ensure that you’re using biometric information consistently with how applicable laws say you should store, use, and secure employees’ personal data.

You can connect  the TotalPass B600 with onsite computers, smartphones and tablets from anywhere, as long as you have web connection. If you’re looking for a next-gen way to solve time and attendance needs, find out how Icon Time’s suite of products can support your workforce management goals.

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