In biometric systems preventing false positive is usually far more important than preventing false negatives. In what situations can false negatives be more serious than false positives?
A false negative is when biometric systems fail to recognize an authentic individual, which would lead to something not happening. Depending on what that something is there could be various consequences:
- Personal: An owner of a safe may be prevented from accessing that safe, leading to him/her being unable to access a necessary resource. Say they really need the money that's in there
- Institutional: Say my entire server infrastructure is down, I need to access my data center to restore service. Ever minute is losing my company thousands of dollars in revenue. The biometric system doesn't recognize me, therefore the company loses more money and reputation
- Safety: A staff member in the datacenter collapses on the floor in cardiac arrest, the biometric system doesn't recognize me when I try to go to her CPR. She could die before I get to her