As new technology becomes more prevalent for everyday security and identification — think fingerprint scanners being used to unlock cellphones or let you into your gym — it is causing a problem for some who don’t have the necessary trait — a fingerprint.
Gretchen Carlson, host of “Real Story” on the Fox News channel, admitted Thursday that she recently learned she doesn’t have fingerprints.
While at the airport applying for an expedited travel security program, Carlson had to give her fingerprints. But the technology the agency was using to take them wouldn’t pick up a print.
According to Carlson, on a scale from 1 to 20, 20 being no fingerprint at all, her prints ranked in at 19.
“What happened to me?” Carlson asked.
Nurse practitioner Erin Tolbert explained to Carlson that there are many ways someone could lose or wear down their fingerprints. One option includes repeated use of fingers, Tolbert said, pointing to Carlson’s stack of papers. Another cause is medications, like chemotherapy.
Fox News’ Clayton Morris told Carlson he thinks scanning technology needs to be that much better to work with these more worn down fingerprints.
“The iPhone 5S is probably the best implementation of this technology yet,” Morris said.
A Scientific American article a few years ago reported a biometric expert saying higher quality, ultrasound scanners that go deeper in the skin only fail about 1 to 2 percent of the time.
In the mean time, Carlson joked about the benefit of her poor fingerprint quality.
“I told the woman, ‘oh, I can become a burglar now,’” she said, recalling what she told the airport agent.
Check out Carlson’s clip on Mediaite.