The Pinellas County School Board District in Clearwater, Fla. has paired up with technology provider Fujitsu Frontech North America to provide a reliable and secure method of handling school food service program transactions.
With more than 102,000 students, the district is the seventh largest in the state and the 24th largest in the nation. Efficiently serving this large population has, at times, proven challenging for the district, particularly in the school cafeteria snack and lunch lines.
Officials have tried everything from swipe cards to PINs, none of which seemed to help. The district even tested a fingerprint scanning system but it proved unreliable. “Students would place their finger on the scanner and leave behind oil, dirt, and residues. This would cause the system to malfunction or freeze up delaying the cafeteria lunch lines,” said Art Dunham, director of Food Service Department at Pinellas County Schools.
Then the district learned about vascular biometrics. Unlike other biometrics, vascular devices don’t require contact with the student’s skin so they are hygienic, non-intrusive and unrestricted by external factors such as skin types and conditions. They identified Fujitsu Frontech and its PalmSecure biometric sensor.
PalmSecure uses near-infrared light to capture and store a student’s palm vein pattern, generating a unique biometric template that is matched against pre-registered user palm vein patterns. This makes forgery virtually impossible.