Brain Fingerprinting technique used to determine scientifically what information is, or is not stored in a particular brain. Brain Finger Printing was invented by Dr B .S. Farwell chief scientist and president of human brain research and laboratory, USA. It measures the response to the visual or audio stimulus.
Brain Fingerprinting method is based on an electric signal which is known as MERMER or Memory and Encoding Related Multifaceted Electroencephalographic. A MERMER is an electrical signal which is a part of the brainwave observed in response to familiar information.
- Personal Computer
- a data acquisition board
- a graphics card for driving two monitors
- a four-channel EEG amplifier system
- software developed by the Brain Fingerprinting lab.
Also Read: Mind Reading Computer
Working of Brain Fingerprinting
A sequence of words, phrases or pictures is presented on the video monitor to the subject, wearing a special headband designed for detecting the brain wave responses. Actually when the brain recognizes something then there are some changes in the activity of the neurons, due to which there are changes in brainwave signals. On the basis of these changes in brain wave signals scientists determine that particular information is present in the subject mind or not.
The entire Brain Fingerprinting system is under computer control, including presentation of the stimuli, recording of electrical brain activity, a mathematical data analysis algorithm that compares the responses of stimuli and produces a determination of “information absent“.
Stimuli are of three types: 1) “irrelevant” stimuli that are irrelevant to the investigated situation and to the test subject, 2) “target” stimuli that are relevant to the investigated situation and are known to the subject, and 3) “probe” stimuli that are relevant to the investigated situation and that the subject denies knowing.
Probes contain information that is known only to the perpetrator and investigators, and not to the general public or to an innocent suspect who was not at the scene of the crime. Before the test, the scientist identifies the targets to the subject and makes sure that he/she knows these relevant stimuli. The scientist also makes sure that the subject does not know the probes for any reason unrelated to the crime, and that the subject denies knowing the probes. (e.g., “You will see several items, one of which is the murder weapon”), but is not told which items are the probes and which are irrelevant.
Also Read: Brain Gate Technology
By comparing the responses to the different types of stimuli, the brain fingerprinting system mathematically computes a determination of “information present” (the subject knows the crime-relevant information contained in the probe stimuli) or “information absent” (the subject does not know the information).
Brain Fingerprinting VS Lie Detector
Since brain fingerprinting uses cognitive brain responses, brain fingerprinting does not depend on the emotions of the subject, nor is it affected by emotional responses. Brain fingerprinting is fundamentally different from the polygraph (lie-detector), which measures emotion-based physiological signals such as heart rate, sweating, and blood pressure. Also, unlike polygraph testing, it does not attempt to determine whether or not the subject is lying or telling the truth. Rather, it measures the subject’s brain response to relevant words, phrases, or pictures to detect whether or not the relevant information is stored in the subject’s brain.
Application of Brain Fingerprinting:
- National security
- Medical diagnosis
- Criminal Justice
Limitation of Brain Fingerprinting
If the suspect knows everything that the investigators know about the crime for some legitimate reason, then the test cannot be applied. If a suspect acknowledges being at the scene of the crime, but claims to be a witness and not a perpetrator, then the fact that he knows details about the crime would not be incriminating. There would be no reason to conduct a test because the resulting “information present” response would simply show that the suspect knew the details about the crime – knowledge which he already admits and which he gained at the crime scene whether he was a witness or a perpetrator.
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