Privacy Issues Surrounding Biometric Technology

The terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center have provoked in-depth discussion and study of existing security measures, their deficiencies, and how to enhance security to prevent similar terrorist attacks from occurring in the future. Biometric technology has risen to the top of the list as a possible solution. The government is not the only entity exploring biometric security systems. The financial services industry see biometrics as a way to curb identity theft. Biometrics are intrinsic physical characteristics used to identify individuals. The most commonly used biometric is fingerprints but others include, handprints, facial features, iris & retinal scans, and voice recognition.

Soon after 9/11 there were calls for the issuance of national ID cards containing biometric information on an RFID chip implanted on the card. The argument is that national ID cards will increase security by identifying individuals with their unique fingerprints which are much more difficult to counterfeit than standard photo ID cards. There is also a movement toward biometric passports. It looks like biometric passports are coming soon. National ID cards may follow.

Biometric identification is nothing new. Humans have been identifying other humans biometrically since the beginning of time. You recognize people you know by their facial features, their voice, and other biometric features. What’s new is introducing technology into the mix that compares a given biometric with a stored database of biometrics to verify the identity of an individual. An individual place their finger on a fingerprint scanner and the image is compared with the database to verify the person’s identity. Promising as it is, biometric technology has not been without hiccups but biometrics are advancing quickly and becoming more and more prevalent in security systems.

Fingerprints are the most commonly used biometric identifiers. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) conducted a study that showed single fingerprint biometric systems had a 98.6 percent accuracy rate. The accuracy rate rose to 99.6 percent when 2 fingerprints were used and an almost perfect 99.9 percent when 4 or more fingerprints were used. The study results show that biometric identification is nearly perfect which is not surprising given the uniqueness of human fingerprints.

The US-VISIT program, which is an acronym for United States Visitor & Immigrant Status Indicator Technology, currently requires foreign visitors to the US to present a biometric passport containing 2 fingerprints and a digital photo for identification purposes before being granted admission to the U.S. Of course the biometrics are compared against a vast network of government databases full of known and suspected terrorists and other criminals.

On the surface biometric technology may sound like a panacea but it’s use has raised significant privacy concerns that need to be addressed. Here are six major privacy concerns: storage, vulnerability, confidence, authenticity, linking, and ubiquity.

Critics wonder how the data will be stored and how vulnerable it will be to theft or abuse. Confidence issues center around the implications of false positives and false negatives. Can the biometric data be used to link to other information about the individual such as marital status, religion, employment status, etc.? And finally ubiquity. What are the implications of leaving electronic “bread crumbs” to mark a trail detailing every movement an individual makes?

Until these issues are addressed, privacy advocates will lead a charge to resist biometric technology claiming it as a way for the government to assume a “Big Brother” type of rule as described in George Orwell’s novel 1984. But protest as they may, it’s likely national security concerns and the ability of biometric systems to enhance the security of US border and possibly prevent another major terrorist attack will win out over privacy concerns.

Affiliate Commissions

Affiliate marketers participating in affiliate programs earn their keep through transactions. Commissions vary from program to program depending on the salability of the product. Some programs give as much as 45% to their affiliates while some affiliate programs give a mere 10%. So small compared to the effort an affiliate marketer puts into his task just to generate a sale.

So what do you do to increase your commission earnings? Do not join affiliate programs which commission rates are only 10%. Investigate the type of products or services that the affiliate programs are promoting to find out if the commission rate of 10% is justified. Beside, an affiliate marketer getting only a 10% commission rate needs to have an extremely large customer base to be able to earn a reasonable amount of money.

Consider this scenario: Suppose you were selling a product that costs about $ 100. To be able to earn enough money from this product you will need at least about 250 visitors to your website. If 60 customers out of the 3,000 visitors bought a product from the website that would give you a commission of $ 6000 a year.

Compare it with this scenario: You are selling a product that gives you $ 1 commission per affiliate program. You would need to sell at least 500 items per month to be able to earn a $ 6000 commission a year! A sales ratio of 2% would mean that your website would have to generate 300,000 visitors a year or 25,000 visitors a month.

Based on the two scenarios, I believe it would be more practical to sell a product of high value. As difficult as it is to attract visitors to a website, it is more difficult to make a sale. Selling a product of higher value would mean generating less traffic to the website but would still earn the affiliate marketer a reasonable amount of money.

And ask yourself this; is the product manufacturer serious with his affiliate marketing program? A manufacturer who is serious in promoting his products would not give a meager 10% commission to his marketing affiliates. You see, to be able to attract effective marketing affiliates the manufacturer would have to use generous commission as bait. So if a marketing program offers you a 10% commission, think about it overnight. You might find out that the effort you placed into selling the product can not be compensated with a 10% commission.

I know of an affiliate program that pays 45% commission to their top affiliate marketers. Second tier affiliate marketers of their program are given 10% commission. The affiliate program is giving away a generous 55% to their affiliate marketers and only keeps 45%! In my opinion, this is a smart marketing strategy. By paying high commissions to their affiliates, they are actually appealing more affiliates to their program. This means that the products they are promoting are moving at a higher volume. This means higher earnings for the manufacturer with no extra effort since the affiliates of his marketing program are doing all the work. This is like dangling a carrot in front of a donkey in order to make the donkey move! In order to make higher volume sales, a generous commission must be dangled in front of affiliate marketers!

What Are The Top Art Schools?

Rankings are always tricky. Rating the top art schools depends on the criteria of the one or ones doing the judging and possibly whether or not they have some sort of connection or vested interest in placing certain schools where they place them. Cronyism aside and imagining a perfect world of total objectivity, a one-size-fits-all rating system would only work in a world where artists are determined ahead of time in a test tube and everyone is a homogenous clone. But then you have to wonder if art and creative expression would even really exist in such a utopian society.

So, back to the present day reality, a single specific answer to the question, "What are the top art schools?" generally does a disservice to the needs of the individual student. As with stereo components, it depends entirely on priority and application. The top school for music and performing arts will likely not be the top school for commercial and visual arts. Even within a single category, the "best" art school will still depend on the needs and priorities of the student.

There are a number of organizations and publications willing to give it a shot, though, and their conclusions can be easily found on the Internet. However, it is best to consider these ratings simply a starting point, as they can be quite misleading. Remember that higher education is funded primarily by the students who attend said facilities. No students, no school. No school, no over-paid faculty incapable of working in the real world. (Oops. Did I say that out loud?) And that, that certainly does not apply to all art school faculty members.

The first thing you need to determine is what you plan to do with an art education. There are many and varied career choices. The art career or occupation you want will be one of the most important deciding factors in your own personal ranking system.

For instance, if you're already working in the art field of your choice (or close to it) and all you need is a piece of paper, then you can probably get what you need from a local community college or state university. Depending on the state, that may be a less expensive way to get that piece of paper than going to a dedicated art school.

If, on the other hand, you're gunning for a particular possibly prestigious position in a well-known art gallery, it would serve you well to work backwards. Find out what they consider the top art schools and which of those they most often hire graduates from. In other words, which art school degree will get your resume to the top of the stack?

Your choice may also come down to economics. What can you afford; what kind of financial aid is available; and what are you chances of a reasonable pay off?

In the end, you are the judge. You will have to determine what the top art schools are for you and make the best choice for you. After all, individuality is the very pulse of art.

Forex Education – 4 Tips for Getting the Best Education To Win

Forex trading looks simple yet few succeed – 95% of new traders lose their money and only 5% win. This may seem an odd fact when anyone has the potential to learn forex trading.

The answer is most traders simply learn the wrong forex education and this article will give 4 tips to get the right education and win.

Firstly the growth of the internet has led to a lot more information becoming available to forex traders and some of it is very good – but most of it is junk and will simply ensure you lose and this leads us to our first tip.

1. Be wary of vendors selling education on the net

Most of them make me laugh for $ 100 or so I can get a system to make me regular profits every day, trade with 80% accuracy or even make me a millionaire – all for a few hundred dollars!

Do not buy them – they will not help your forex education.

There simply marketing guys not traders – if they were, they would shut up and trade for themselves, if making money was as easy as they say they would not need me or you.

2. Do not learn the wrong Knowledge!

There are many myths that have beenpetrated on the net mostly by vendors and let's start with the largest one – forex day trading works.

No it does not, day traders do not make money – period

All short term volatility is random, so it can not – that's why you never see a day trader with a real time track record of profits.

Scientific theories are a great way to make money, another stupid myth.

If markets moved to scientific theory, we would all know the price in advance and there would be no market, yet new traders still learn junk theories like Elliot wave and Fibonacci numbers, lose and wonder why.

3. Get Knowledge from the real pro's

You can do this simply by going to Amazon.com and you can get some really good forex education from traders who have walked the walk, rather than simply talk the talk.

For about $ 100 or so you can get some great advice (see our top 10 books for traders) and get them. They will inspire you and give you a good solid grounding in what it takes to be a successful forex trader.

This is an investment in your forex education that is well worth the money.

4. Work Smart Not Hard

Forex education involves working smart not hard and learning the right knowledge.

If you want to learn forex trading ALL that you need to build a successful system is available free on the net.

See our other articles, there is some great information on technical analysis, formations and indicators and it's all free.

You do not get rewarded for the effort you put into forex trading you get your reward from being right with your forex signals – nothing else. All you need to do is get the right info and you can become a successful trader.

CONSIDER THIS FACT

In 1983 Legendary trader Richard Dennis to prove that traders could be taught took 23 traders with no trading experience and taught them to trade in 14 days.

These traders went on to make Dennis $ 100 million dollars! The story is told in "The way of the turtle" and also Market Wizards – Get these books and you will see that Dennis made them focus on the RIGHT education to win with no filler.

Now you may not make as much money as the turtles but anyone can learn to trade and learn to win if they focus on the right education – you just need to find it digest it, apply it and hopefully this article will have pointed you in the right direction – Good luck.