Sodexho has launched a pilot-program for a biometric-finger scan payment system at Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA, and the University of North Texas in Denton. The program, called iMye, operates like a debit card system in that students or their families fund electronic accounts that are then drawn down as students make purchases at select retail outlets.
At the point of sale, a scanner reads the student's fingerprint to verify identity and then completes the transaction by deducting the amount owed from the debit account.
Sodexho says it will evaluate the results of the pilot program before deciding whether to use the technology at other campuses where it manages dining and retail operations.
Like similar systems used in primary and secondary schools, the system uses an initial scan of an individual's fingerprint to create an algorithmic code that can later be used for positive identification.This process avoids the objection raised by some civil libertarians that the system is in effect a way of collecting fingerprints for unknown future uses. In fact, the system retains no database of fingerprint images, Sodexho emphasizes.