Many new laptops now come with biometric scanners, allowing you to secure the machine with a fingerprint instead of a password. If you use an older computer that you have no plans of upgrading, then you can resort to a USB scanner to add biometric security. Problem is, those peripherals aren’t exactly the most compact things. At least, that was the case before Synaptics’ new USB Fingerprint Scanner.
Instead of coming in at the size of candy bars like typical biometric peripherals, the new device shrinks the entire hardware down into a dongle that sits flush on the side of your laptop. That way, you can keep it plugged in your laptop permanently without any problems, ensuring you’ll always have your security hardware on standby.
The Synaptics USB Fingerprint Scanner is designed to work with Windows Hello and Microsoft Passport, allowing you to gain access to your PC with a simple touch of a finger, all while keeping everyone else out. It comes in four variants: two that sit flush on the edge of the laptop (one vertical and one horizontal) and two that hold the scanner surface on an angle (one vertical and one horizontal, too). Granted, keeping one of these permanently plugged in means giving up an extra USB port you might need for other things (like the indispensable USB Tentacle), but if you really want the extra security, it sure seems like a worthy tradeoff.
Available as a turnkey solution, the Synaptics USB Fingerprint is being marketed to OEMs and private labels, so expect to see it in stores under different brand names.