New palm vein technology paves the way for global identity management
Pearson VUE, the leader in secure high-stakes testing, announced today that it is introducing several key enhancements to its Secure Testing FrameworkTM, including the implementation of palm vein recognition technology, which will be piloted in its Pearson Professional Centers and Pearson VUE® Authorized Test Center Select sites next month.
Throughout its history, Pearson VUE has pioneered a number of security technologies now considered standard in the industry, beginning with its wholly-owned and -operated test center network, the Pearson Professional Centers, launched in 2002 to provide the highest levels of test center quality and security. Now, with the introduction of additional enhancements-like improved identity management and forensic capabilities-Pearson VUE is further extending its position as the leader in testing security.
"Security is integral to our business and permeates every aspect of our jobs," said Mark Poole, director of test security for Pearson VUE. "It starts with our secure test center network -we established the Pearson Professional Centers as our flagship testing channel to control test center quality and the overall testing experience. Our global identity management capabilities also set us apart," he explained. "Palm vein authentication will allow us to move toward one-to-many comparisons in the future at a speed that is conducive to a large-scale, global testing operation. Furthermore, we're launching a host of new forensic services-from automated Web monitoring of brain-dump sites, to enacting real-time results holds in instances of suspicious behavior, to digital watermarking of exam data. These enhancements will help us identify security breaches and act upon them quickly."
Pearson VUE engaged International Biometric Group (IBG), a leading independent designer and integrator of identification system and solutions, to customize and integrate Fujitsu's vein recognition solution. IBG Partner Samir Nanavati explained, "Pearson needed to marry the need for a truly global identity management system with a non-intrusive, superior candidate experience. This palm vein system provides a highly secure and cost-effective solution without the criminal connotations some (test takers) associate with fingerprint technology."
Fujitsu is a leading provider of IT-based business solutions for the global marketplace and is the creator of the PalmSecureTM device, which compares the pattern of veins in the palm of a person being authenticated with a pattern stored in a database. This is done by taking a scan of the palm of an individual's hand using a safe, invisible light source. The scan is immediately converted into a template that is unique to each individual.
"Palm vein technology represents the very cutting edge of candidate authentication," said Joel Hagberg, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development, Fujitsu. "Unlike fingerprinting, retina scanning, or other biometric offerings, Fujitsu's next generation technology represents a virtually error-free identification system that is non-intrusive to the user. Our partnership with Pearson VUE represents the first time this technology will be used in a high-stakes testing environment. We think this will quickly become the standard for anyone who is serious about identity management. We're honored Pearson VUE chose our device for this ground-breaking initiative."
"Pearson VUE is committed to continually improving our security offerings, because exam scores-and the credentials they lead to-are only as valid as the security measures we use," explained Robert Whelan, president of Pearson VUE. "When we introduced fingerprinting in our Pearson Professional Centers in 2002, it was the best option available to us-and it's still a great way to verify a single individual," he added. "However, to stay ahead of those who would cheat the system, we need to compare a biometric scan across an entire database of test takers very quickly and our move to palm vein recognition will help us accomplish that. As we implement these new security measures, more perpetrators of exam fraud will be exposed and prosecuted. Credentialing organizations, employers and others will all benefit from this technology. But the greatest beneficiary will be those who studied hard and gave their best effort, because those individuals can rest assured that they are competing on a level playing field."
About Pearson VUE
Pearson VUE (www.pearsonvue.com) is the global leader in electronic testing for regulatory and certification boards, providing a full suite of services from test development to test delivery to data management. Pearson VUE offers exams through the world's largest network of test centers in 162 countries, providing testing services for information technology, academic, government and professional clients. Pearson VUE acquired the former Promissor in 2006, thereby extending its leadership in the certification market. The company's innovative technology offers the highest levels of security and program control, while its commitment to service provides clients and individual test takers with an unmatched testing experience.
Pearson VUE is a business of Pearson (NYSE: PSO; LSE: PSON), the international media company, whose businesses include the Financial Times Group, Pearson Education and the Penguin Group.
As a vendor-independent, technology-neutral company, IBG designs and integrates identification solutions across multiple platforms in complex, mission-critical environments. IBG has 12 years of experience in biometric applications spanning network access, identification systems, surveillance, multimodal, and fusion systems. IBG conducts custom, next-generation R&D, supporting governments in to advance the state of the art in the deployment of large-scale systems. IBG is headquartered in New York City, with additional locations in London, UK; Washington, DC; Arlington, VA; Herndon, VA; and San Francisco, CA.
About Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Inc.
Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Inc. conducts engineering and marketing activities in Sunnyvale, CA and sales operations throughout the United States. Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Inc. currently offers products and services including scanners and scanner maintenance, hard disk drives, palm vein recognition technology and 10Gb Ethernet switches. Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Inc. is located at 1255 East Arques Avenue, Sunnyvale, CA, 94085. For more information about Fujitsu products and services, call us at 800-626-4686 or 408-746-7000. For more information, please see: http://us.fujitsu.com/fcpa.
Mary Beth Mohn