There is no doubt we’ve all encountered someone with a less than pleasant body odor. Well, that distinct smell, while just a nuisance today, may soon become your means of identification. Scientists are discovering that human scent is not only unique to each person but also constant enough over time to have an 85% identification accuracy rate. Researchers at the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid in Spain are creating a system to use scent to verify a person’s identity.
When it comes to identification, the benefits of using body odor as opposed to fingerprints, facial recognition or eye scanning are plentiful. While fingerprint identification is highly accurate, it has a negative connotation because of its association with criminal records. Even innocent people often hesitate to provide their fingerprints. Likewise, eye and iris scans may seem overly invasive while facial recognition is relatively inaccurate. Using a person’s unique scent as a method of identification would avoid these various problems.
How would identification using body odor work? As someone walks through a stall, sensors would pick up the scent. Scientists believe this technology can be used across several platforms, from airport security to border checkpoints, for business or health, and beyond. So next time you get a whiff of someone, remember it could be that person’s future ID card.