Back in 1996, Hollywood wowed us with the first installment of the Mission Impossible movie franchise. Ethan Hunt, an agent for the super-secret Impossible Missions Force (IMF), navigated one deadly scene after another after being framed for the murder of his fellow agents. Easily the most iconic scene of the movie involves Ethan Hunt breaking into the CIA headquarters to retrieve a data disk. The room is secured by a battery of defenses, which include thermal and noise sensors, iris and fingerprint biometric access, and, of course, lasers.

In the 18 years since Mission Impossible was released in theaters, next-generation biometric and combination lock security measures have gone from something you’d see in an action movie to a technology found in an increasing number of businesses and homes. Many of the exhibitions at International Security Conference West were centered on consumer-level biometrics technology and Smartphone Apps for securing your home.

In the past, high-tech security panels utilizing fingerprint or iris scanners could only be found in highly-secured government buildings or among the biggest corporations with invaluable trade secrets. It simply wasn’t financially feasible for a home, business, or local government to invest in such expensive technology. However, thanks to innovations and cost-reduction techniques from leading companies in security hardware industry, the next generation of alarm panels and security systems may include affordable biometric features.

Why Biometric Security Matters

According to the California Department of Justice, there were 15,178 reported burglaries in San Bernardino County in 2009. In Riverside County, there were 17,308 burglaries, and in Los Angeles County there were an astounding 50,558 burglaries.
Studies have shown that about a third of home break-ins do not involve forcible entry. A burglar can break into a home without forcible entry a number of ways. One of the most common ways is if the burglar has access to a key to the front door. New security features can completely remove this risk from any home or business. Every family member in your home, or every one of your employees, has a completely unique and non-transferable method of access.

Let’s do the Math

In 2009, there were a combined 83,044 reported burglaries in Los Angeles County, San Bernardino County, and Riverside County. If a third of those burglaries didn’t involve forced entry, that would equate to 27,000 burglaries without forced entry.
How many of those questionable burglaries could have been prevented by biometric security or combination locks?

Biometric Highlights From ISC West

This year at ISC West, dozens of exhibits on biometric access control were featured. Two of the highlights included:


MorphoTrak was one of the featured exhibitors at this year’s ISC West. They offer several biometric security solutions, and manage over 3 billion fingerprints across the globe. Their exhibit included a biometric fingerprint alarm panel and a biometric punch clock for employees.


Cognitec was also one of the featured exhibitors this year. Cognitec specializes in facial recognition software which is used primarily by law enforcement and corporate security to quickly identify known threats in real-time.

When Will Biometric Technology Be Available to the Average Consumer?

As a matter of fact, there are already millions of consumers using biometric technology throughout their day. Apple’s iPhone 5s is just one example of how biometric technology is becoming more commonplace and more affordable; a trend that is certainly set to continue throughout 2014.


Today’s best application for the average homeowner is Honeywell’s Tuxedo Touch keypad with ZWave technology built right in. ZWave is a wireless communication path used to connect “lifestyle” and security devices to Mijac Alarm’s smart interactive systems including a combination lock on your front door that can be accessed via your smartphone from anywhere in the world. Imagine yourself unlocking the front door to your house from work for your cleaning lady rather than handing her a key to keep on her key ring with your name and address on it … small changes in your life that may have a big impact.

Other Zwave technologies include HVAC control of your cooling and heating functions, turning lights on and off via a prearranged schedule, all to help save you some cash on energy consumption.

Biometric technology is on the cusp for high-end alarm panels, but before too long the technology will be standard in most new systems. Investing in biometric security is certain to make your home or business much safer. Just be sure to keep IMF agent Ethan Hunt on your side.


To learn more about security services offered by Mijac Alarm, please visit our main website, or call us at (909) 982-7612!

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