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Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 539395, 11 pages
Research Article

Using Medical History Embedded in Biometrics Medical Card for User Identity Authentication: Data Representation by AVT Hierarchical Data Tree

Department of Computer and Information Science, University of Macau, Taipa, Macau

Received 19 December 2011; Accepted 25 December 2011

Academic Editor: Sabah Mohammed

Copyright © 2012 Simon Fong and Yan Zhuang. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


User authentication has been widely used by biometric applications that work on unique bodily features, such as fingerprints, retina scan, and palm vessels recognition. This paper proposes a novel concept of biometric authentication by exploiting a user’s medical history. Although medical history may not be absolutely unique to every individual person, the chances of having two persons who share an exactly identical trail of medical and prognosis history are slim. Therefore, in addition to common biometric identification methods, medical history can be used as ingredients for generating Q&A challenges upon user authentication. This concept is motivated by a recent advancement on smart-card technology that future identity cards are able to carry patents’ medical history like a mobile database. Privacy, however, may be a concern when medical history is used for authentication. Therefore in this paper, a new method is proposed for abstracting the medical data by using attribute value taxonomies, into a hierarchical data tree (h-Data). Questions can be abstracted to various level of resolution (hence sensitivity of private data) for use in the authentication process. The method is described and a case study is given in this paper.