Are fingerprint scans safe & reliable enough for gun storage?


How can we ensure quick and reliable access to a gun stored for protection? How can we balance such contradicting forces when it comes to protecting ourselves and our loved ones? 

Well, it goes without saying that the best place to store your gun is in a holster on your body. But what if you’re the type of person that occasionally takes a shower, sleeps, or blasphemously hangs out at home without a gun belt, chest rig, and NOD's on?

Well, if you have kids or other people in your household who should not have access to your gun, you may end up taking your gun off and putting it in some type of vault or safe. This creates the whole problem of having to access your gun.

Reading this, your inner commando is probably already freaking out and screaming something like "Always be ready!" or "Keep it on your belt" or "Give them nothing, but take form them everything!"

Again, everyone is in agreement here. No storage device will ever be as quick as your Instagram optimized draw of the century. That's just the way it is. That said, if you do ever take off and store your gun, here is something you should understand.

When it comes to accessing guns stored for protection, SPEED MATTERS, and equally if not even more important is the RELIABILITY OF ACCESS UNDER STRESS.

Now, when it comes to fingerprint verification, speed & reliability are naturally at odds with each other. That's because your actual fingerprint, mathematically speaking, is INFINITELY complex. 

It's just not feasible to capture, store, and cross-reference every single datapoint your finger represents, especially when you only have limited processing power and limited time available for the job.

This is why today's fingerprint technology relies on using a limited number of features extracted from your actual fingerprint to create a digital model for authentication. As the number of features and the resulting amount of data to be processed increases, so does the time it takes for authentication to take place. If the amount of data decreases, authentication speeds up.

This relationship between the amount of data and the speed of processing will persist no matter how powerful the microprocessor or how sophisticated the matching algorithm doing the job is. Even if you had the most powerful supercomputer on the planet in your gun safe, it would still take more time to process a highly accurate image of your fingerprint than it would to process a rough representation of it.

This means that if you want to access a gun quickly and reliably using a fingerprint scan, you will do so at the expense of the accuracy of authentication, which could lead to false positives (meaning your safe may also open for your daughter). On the other hand, if you want extremely accurate user authentication, you will have to sacrifice speed and may end up with false negatives (meaning your safe may not open for you).

While having an extremely powerful microprocessor & sophisticated algorithm doing the work will help in both cases, it will not solve the fundamental contradiction between these forces.

So, does this mean that "biometric technology" or fingerprint scanning is bad? 

No, not necessarily. This just reinforces the importance of training.

This means you must understand and practice with your gun storage device the same way you do with your gun. Practice with it to the point that you come to understand its functionality and limitations on a deep, innate, experiential level.

If you want to win, you must put in the work. Nothing will ever eliminate the need to put in the work. Get in as many reps as possible. Practice. Practice. Practice. 

If you want to survive the worst day of your life, you already have what it takes. All you need to do now is one rep at a time.

Keep learning, keep training, and keep growing as a Force for Good!
David

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