Fingerprinting may seem like a relatively modern method of verifying a person’s authenticity, but it actually has a long, varied past.
- – Ancient Babylon and China: Fingerprints of individuals were used as seals for business (and potentially personal) transactions.
- – Persia (1500s): Fingerprints were used on government papers. This is one of the first known times in history that it was noted that no two fingerprints were the same.
– England (late 1850s) – Fingerprints began systematically being used by the English for various purposes.
– United States (early 1880s) – The U.S. Geological Survey, New Mexico, used Gilbert Thompson’s fingerprints on a document to thwart forgery attempts.
– Argentina (early 1890s) – The first fingerprint ID was used to solve a murder.
– New York, U.S. (1903) – Systematic use of fingerprint IDs for criminals was set in place by the New York State Prison system.
Today, fingerprinting has a wide variety of uses; in fact, many computers and laptops can be protected using fingerprint identification tools instead of written passwords.
It’s a fascinating study… we can only wonder what fingerprinting be used for next.