BiometricClassID != ClassID

event_note May 23, 2013

Recently there was some confusion about the ClassID used to access the biometric data stored by the BioID Web Service (BWS) for a single individual.

The data set for a person is identified by the BCID (BiometricClassID). This identifier consists of three parts: The string naming the storage, the number of the storage partition and the number denoting the class identifier.

The first part - the storage name - is assigned by us. Depending on the type of contract you have with BioID this could be your company name for example. Or if you use a multitenant installation it is a more generic term.

The partition id - that's the second part of the biometric class id - is a number that's assigned to your account by us too. It is denoting a logical unit withhin your storage. Partitions can be used to organize the storage in smaller chunks of data, e.g. grouping together data sets into geographical regions they belong to. Or you can group the biometric data into logical units matching departments of your organisation.

Using partitions can speed up identification since only the biometric templates of ClassIDs in one partition are used for the operation. Otherwise the whole storage consisting of a single large partition would be searched.

The last part of the Biometric ClassID is the ClassID. This is an integer value assigned to a single individual in the storage. All biometric templates, traits and images are identified with the ClassID. You should never enroll more than one single individual with the same ClassID. It would make no sense to create a biometric template with traits of more than one person.

We've chosen to use only integer values for the partition and ClassID part of the BCID to ensure the anonymity of the BioID Web Service. Only the customer can connect the biometric template with other personal information of a single user. For the BioID Web Service they are just anonymous BCIDs without any personal information.

You can find the definition of the BiometricClassID class in our BioID Web Service SOAP API Documentation.

So if you access the biometric data for a single individual you have to use all three parts of the BiometricClassID to identify a certain data set.