Effectiveness of symmetric rejection for a secure and user convenient multistage biometric system

Md S. Hossain, Kiran S. Balagani, Vir V. Phoha

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


A multistage biometric verification system uses multiple biometrics and/or multiple biometric verifiers to generate a verification decision. The core of a multistage biometric verification system is reject option which allows a stage not to give a genuine/impostor decision when it is not confident enough. This paper studies the effectiveness of symmetric rejection for multistage biometric verification systems. The symmetric rejection method determines the reject region by symmetrically rejecting equal proportion of genuine and impostor scores. The applicability of a multistage biometric verification system depends on how secure and user convenient it is, which is measured by the performance–cost trade-off. This paper analyzes the performance–cost trade-off of symmetric rejection method by conducting extensive experiments. Experiments are performed on two biometric databases: (1) publicly available NIST database and (2) a keystroke database. In addition, the symmetric rejection method is empirically compared with two existing rejection methods: (1) sequential probability ratio test-based method, which uses score-fusion and (2) Marcialis et al.’s method, which does not use score fusion. Results demonstrate strong effect of symmetric rejection method on creating a secure and user convenient multistage biometric verification system.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)49-60
Number of pages12
JournalPattern Analysis and Applications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 2021


  • Biometrics
  • Multi-stage biometric verification
  • Reject option
  • Sequential probability ratio test
  • Serial fusion
  • Symmetric rejection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Artificial Intelligence


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