direct fingerprint reader
Abbreviated as DFR (and also called a fingerprint scanner or fingerprint reader) a direct fingerprint reader is a biometrics device that uses automated methods of recognizing a person based on unique physical characteristics of a person's fingerprint. A fingerprint is made up of a pattern of ridges and furrows as well as characteristics that occur at minutiae points (ridge bifurcation or a ridge ending). Fingerprint scanning essentially provides an identification of a person based on the acquisition and recognition (or verification) of those unique patterns and ridges in a fingerprint.
Fingerprint devices are by far the most popular form of biometric security used, with a variety of systems on the market intended for general and mass market usage.
See "How Fingerprint Scanners Work" in the ""Did You Know..." section of Webopedia.
See also "How Biometrics Security Works" in the "Did You Know..." section of Webopedia.