Today, there are commercially available, certified hardware peripheral devices (i.e., listed on Appendix F of the FBI Electronic Biometric Transmission Specification (EBTS)) that law enforcement personnel use for the purposes described that are highly accurate, meet current standards, and are interoperable with fingerprint databases. These devices tend to be portable and are mostly connected to smartphones, tablets, or laptops via cable or wireless communications to transfer files. The files may be stored, managed, or manipulated by a mobile application on a smartphone or tablet. However, these devices require agencies to purchase additional equipment and field officers to carry that equipment in addition to the large collection of equipment they already carry.
While these are technically mobile devices, the term “mobile device” for the purposes of this challenge and throughout these Official Rules means a smartphone or tablet from a major vendor that can run mobile applications and access the available device sensors to capture digital fingerprint images.
The use of existing or modified certified hardware peripheral devices is not permitted in this challenge.
This challenge seeks innovative new or improved mobile applications that access the available sensors on mobile devices to capture high-quality digital fingerprint images, thereby improving the performance and efficiency of identification in the field. Contestants are asked to submit a mobile application that captures quality digital images of at least two fingers (including index and middle) on the left and right hands. The ultimate objective of this challenge is to advance technology while preserving the form factor of the mobile device. Law enforcement officers explicitly do not want to carry additional equipment; however, a contestant’s prototype may modify the form factor with justification.
This challenge encourages contestants to provide innovative solutions that support the unique requirements of law enforcement officers. In preparation for this challenge, PSCR worked with multiple subject matter experts (SMEs) to understand the current state of the technology and identify technical gaps or barriers that are inhibiting advances in capturing digital fingerprints on mobile devices. While contestants are encouraged to bridge these gaps, contestants are also encouraged to explore and innovate in any area that would improve the accuracy and quality of the fingerprint capture technology.