On the Reliability of Cancelable Biometrics: Revisit the Irreversibility

10/17/2019
by   Xingbo Dong, et al.
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Over the years, many biometric template protection schemes, primarily based on the notion of "cancelable biometrics" have been proposed. A cancelable biometric algorithm needs to satisfy four biometric template protection criteria, i.e., irreversibility, revocability, unlinkability, and performance preservation. However, a systematic analysis of irreversibility has been often neglected. In this paper, the common distance correlation characteristic of cancelable biometrics is analyzed. Next, a similarity-based attack is formulated to break the irreversibility of cancelable biometric under the Kerckhoffs's assumption where the cancelable biometrics algorithm and parameter are known to the attackers. The irreversibility based on the mutual information is also redefined, and a framework to measure the information leakage from the distance correlation characteristic is proposed. The results achieved on face, iris, and fingerprint prove that it is theoretically hard to meet full irreversibility. To have a good biometric system, a balance has to be achieved between accuracy and security.

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