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Publication numberUS20070130436 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/624,667
Publication dateJun 7, 2007
Filing dateJan 18, 2007
Priority dateOct 19, 1999
Also published asDE10001672A1, DE10001672C2, US7257714, US20070300028, US20070300029, US20070300030, US20080005580, US20080005581, US20080005582, US20080005583, US20080005584, US20080005585, US20080010465, US20080046633, US20080046634, US20080046635
Publication number11624667, 624667, US 2007/0130436 A1, US 2007/130436 A1, US 20070130436 A1, US 20070130436A1, US 2007130436 A1, US 2007130436A1, US-A1-20070130436, US-A1-2007130436, US2007/0130436A1, US2007/130436A1, US20070130436 A1, US20070130436A1, US2007130436 A1, US2007130436A1
InventorsMing-Shiang Shen
Original AssigneeSuper Talent Electronics, Inc.
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Electronic Data Storage Medium With Fingerprint Verification Capability
US 20070130436 A1
Abstract
An electronic data storage medium is adapted to be accessed by a data terminal, and includes a processing unit connected to a memory device that stores a data file and security reference data possessed by a person authorized to access the data file, and an input-output interface circuit activable so as to establish communication with the data terminal. The processing unit is operable selectively in a programming mode and a data retrieving mode. The electronic data storage medium also includes a function key set for manually switching the electronic data storage medium between the programming mode and the data retrieving mode.
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Claims(20)
1. An electronic data storage medium adapted to be accessed by a data terminal, said electronic data storage medium comprising:
a non-volatile memory device for storing a data file and reference data possessed by a person authorized to access the data file;
security means for entering the security data into the electronic data storage medium;
an input/output interface circuit for establishing communication with the data terminal;
a processing unit coupled to said non-volatile memory device, said security means and said input/output interface circuit, wherein said processing unit includes means for selectively operating in a programming mode in which said processing unit activates said input/output interface circuit to receive the data file from said data terminal and stores the data file in said non-volatile memory device, a data retrieving mode in which said processing unit accesses the data file stored in said non-volatile memory device and activates said input/output interface circuit to transmit the data file to said data terminal, and a data resetting mode in which the processing unit facilitates erasing of the data file from said non-volatile memory device;
means for manually switching the electronic data storage medium between the programming mode and the data retrieving mode;
means for controlling said processing unit when the electronic data storage medium is in the programming mode such that the processing unit transfers at least one of the data file and the reference data from the input/output interface circuit into said non-volatile memory device, and
means for controlling said processing unit when the electronic data storage medium is in the data retrieving mode such that the processing unit compares the security data entered through said security means with the reference data stored in said non-volatile memory device, and activates said input/output interface circuit to transmit the data file stored in the non-volatile memory device to the data terminal only when the security data matches the reference data.
2. The electronic data storage medium of claim 1, wherein said non-volatile memory device is a flash memory device.
3. The electronic data storage medium of claim 1, wherein said processing unit includes means for storing the data file in said non-volatile memory device in a compressed format.
4. The electronic data storage medium of claim of 3, wherein said means for manually switching the electronic data storage medium comprises a function key set connected to said processing unit, and wherein said function key set includes means for initiating operation of said processing unit in a selected one of the programming, data retrieving and data resetting modes.
5. The electronic data storage medium of claim 4, wherein said memory device further comprises means for storing a reference password therein, wherein said function key set includes means for providing an input password to said processing unit, and wherein said processing unit includes means for comparing the input password with reference password and for initiating operation in the data resetting mode upon verifying that the input password corresponds with the reference password.
6. The electronic data storage medium of claim 3, where in said processing unit further comprises means for automatically initiating operation in the data resetting mode upon detecting that a preset time period has elapsed since storage of the data file and the fingerprint reference data in said non-volatile memory device.
7. The electronic data storage medium of claim 1, further comprising a display unit connected to and controlled by said processing unit for displaying the data file exchanged with the data terminal.
8. An electronic data storage medium adapted to be accessed by a data terminal, said electronic data storage medium comprising:
a card body;
a non-volatile memory device, mounted on said card body, for storing a data file and reference data possessed by a person authorized to access the data file;
security means for entering the security data into the electronic data storage medium;
an input/output interface circuit, mounted on said card body, for establishing communication with the data terminal;
a processing unit, mounted on said card body, coupled to said non-volatile memory device, said security means and said input/output interface circuit;
means for manually switching the electronic data storage medium between a programming mode and a data retrieving mode;
means for controlling said processing unit when the electronic data storage medium is in the programming mode such that the processing unit transfers at least one of the data file and the reference data from the input/output interface circuit into said non-volatile memory device, and
means for controlling said processing unit when the electronic data storage medium is in the data retrieving mode such that the processing unit compares the security data entered through said security means with the reference data stored in said non-volatile memory device, and activates said input/output interface circuit to transmit the data file to the data terminal only when the security data matches the reference data.
9. The electronic data storage medium of claim 8, wherein said non-volatile memory device is a flash memory device.
10. The electronic data storage medium of claim 8, wherein said processing unit includes means for storing the data file in said non-volatile memory device in a compressed format.
11. The electronic data storage medium of claim of 10, wherein said means for manually switching the electronic data storage medium comprises a function key set connected to said processing unit, and wherein said function key set includes means for initiating operation of said processing unit in a selected one of the programming, data retrieving and data resetting modes.
12. The electronic data storage medium of claim 11, wherein said memory device further comprises means for storing a reference password therein, wherein said function key set includes means for providing an input password to said processing unit, and wherein said processing unit includes means for comparing the input password with reference password and for initiating operation in the data resetting mode upon verifying that the input password corresponds with the reference password.
13. The electronic data storage medium of claim 11, where in said processing unit further comprises means for automatically initiating operation in the data resetting mode upon detecting that a preset time period has elapsed since storage of the data file and the fingerprint reference data in said non-volatile memory device.
14. The electronic data storage medium of claim 8, further comprising a display unit connected to and controlled by said processing unit for displaying the data file exchanged with the data terminal.
15. An electronic data storage medium adapted to be accessed by a data terminal, said electronic data storage medium comprising:
a card body;
a non-volatile memory device, mounted on said card body, for storing at least a data file;
an input/output interface circuit, mounted on said card body, for establishing communication with the data terminal;
a processing unit, mounted on said card body, coupled to said non-volatile memory device, and said input/output interface circuit, wherein said processing unit includes means for selectively operating in a programming mode in which said processing unit activates said input/output interface circuit to receive the data file from said data terminal and stores the data file in said non-volatile memory device, a data retrieving mode in which said processing unit accesses the data file stored in said non-volatile memory device and activates said input/output interface circuit to transmit the data file to said data terminal, and a data resetting mode in which the processing unit facilitates erasing of the data file from said non-volatile memory device;
means for manually switching the electronic data storage medium between the programming mode and the data retrieving mode;
means for controlling said processing unit when the electronic data storage medium is in the programming mode such that the processing unit transfers at least one data file from the input/output interface circuit into said non-volatile memory device, and
means for controlling said processing unit when the electronic data storage medium is in the data retrieving mode such that the processing unit activates said input/output interface circuit to transmit at least one data file stored in the non-volatile memory device to the data terminal.
16. The electronic data storage medium of claim 15, wherein said non-volatile memory device is a flash memory device.
17. The electronic data storage medium of claim 15, further comprising a power source, mounted on said card body, for supplying electrical power thereon.
18. The electronic data storage medium of claim 15, wherein said means for manually switching comprises a functional key set, mounted on said card body, connected to said processing unit and operable so as to initiate operation of said processing unit in a selected one of the programming, data retrieving and data resetting mode.
19. The electronic data storage medium of claim 15, further comprising a display unit, mounted on said card body, connected to and controlled by said processing unit for displaying the data file exchanged with the data terminal.
20. The electronic data storage medium of claim 1, further comprising a power source for supplying electrical power thereon.
Description
RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application is a divisional of U.S. patent application for “ELECTRONIC DATA STORAGE MEDIUM WITH FINGERPRINT VERIFICATION CAPABILITY”, U.S. application Ser. No. 09/478,720, filed Jan. 6, 2000.

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

1. Field of the Invention

The invention relates to an electronic data storage medium, more particularly to an electronic data storage medium with a fingerprint verification capability.

2. Description of the Related Art

At present, confidential data files are stored in floppy disks or are delivered via networks that require passwords or that use encryption coding for security. Confidential documents can be sent by adding safety seals and impressions during delivering. However, the aforesaid are exposed to the risks of breaking of the passwords, encryption codes, safety seals and impressions, thereby resulting in unsecure transfer of information.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

Therefore, the object of the present invention is to provide an electronic data storage medium with a fingerprint verification capability for security during the transfer of information.

According to the present invention, an electronic data storage medium is adapted to be accessed by a data terminal. The electronic data storage medium includes a memory device, a fingerprint sensor, an input-output interface circuit and a processing unit.

The memory device stores a data file and fingerprint reference data obtained by scanning a fingerprint of a person authorized to access the data file.

The fingerprint sensor is adapted to scan a fingerprint of a user of the electronic data storage medium and to generate fingerprint scan data.

The input/output interface circuit is activable so as to establish communication with the data terminal.

The processing unit is connected to the memory device, the fingerprint sensor and the input/output interface circuit. The processing unit is operable selectively in

a programming mode, where the processing unit activates the input/output interface circuit to receive the data file and the fingerprint reference data from the data terminal, and to store the data file and the fingerprint reference data in the memory device, and

a data retrieving mode, where the processing unit receives the fingerprint scan data from the fingerprint sensor, compares the fingerprint scan data with the fingerprint reference data in the memory device to verify if the user of the electronic data storage medium is authorized to access the data file stored in the memory device, and activates the input/output interface circuit to transmit the data file to the data terminal upon verifying that the user of the electronic data storage medium is authorized to access the data file stored in the memory device.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWING

Other features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent in the following detailed description of the preferred embodiment with reference to the accompanying drawings, of which:

FIG. 1 is a schematic circuit block diagram illustrating the preferred embodiment of an electronic data storage medium according to the present invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

Referring to FIG. 1, according to the preferred embodiment of the present invention, an electronic data storage medium is adapted to be accessed by an external computer 9, and is shown to include a card body 1, a processing unit 2, a memory device 3, a fingerprint sensor 4, an input/output interface circuit 5, a display unit 6, a power source 7, and a function key set 8.

The memory device 3, such as a flash memory device, is mounted on the card body 1, and stores a data file, a reference password, and fingerprint reference data obtained by scanning a fingerprint of a person authorized to access the data file in a known manner therein. The data file can be a picture file or a text file.

The fingerprint sensor 4 is mounted on the card body 1, and is adapted to scan a fingerprint of a user of the electronic data storage medium and to generate fingerprint scan data. One example of the fingerprint sensor 4 that can be used in the present invention is that disclosed in a co-owned U.S. Pat. No. 6,547,130, entitled “INTEGRATED CIRCUIT CARD WITH FINGERPRINT VERIFICATION CAPABILITY”, the entire disclosure of which is incorporated herein by reference.

The input/output interface circuit 5, such as a PCMCIA or RS232 interface, is mounted on the card body 1, and is activable so as to establish communication with the external computer 9.

The processing unit 2 is mounted on the card body 1, and is connected to the memory device 3, the fingerprint sensor 4 and the input/output interface circuit 5. The processing unit 2 is operable selectively in:

a programming mode, where the processing unit 2 activates the input/output interface circuit 5 to receive the data file and the fingerprint reference data from the external computer 9, and to store the data file and the fingerprint reference data in the memory device 3 in a compressed format to increase storage capacity of the memory device 3;

a data retrieving mode, where the processing unit 2 receives the fingerprint scan data from the fingerprint sensor 4, compares the fingerprint scan data with at least a segment of the fingerprint reference data in the memory device 3 to verify if the user of the electronic data storage medium is authorized to access the data file stored in the memory device 3, and activates the input/output interface circuit 5 to transmit the data file to the external computer 9 upon verifying that the user of the electronic data storage medium is authorized to access the data file stored in the memory device 3; and

a data resetting mode, where the data file and the finger reference data are erased from the memory device 3.

The power source 7 is mounted on the card body 1, and is connected to the processing unit 2 for supplying electrical power thereto.

The function key set 8, which is mounted on the card body 1, is connected to the processing unit 2, and is operable so as to initiate operation of the processing unit 2 in a selected one of the programming, data retrieving and data resetting modes. The function key set 8 is operable to provide an input password to the processing unit 2. The processing unit 2 compares the input password with the reference password in the memory device 3, and initiates operation in the data resetting mode upon verifying that the input password corresponds with the reference password.

The display unit 6 is mounted on the card body 1, and is connected to and controlled by the processing unit 2 for showing the data file exchanged with the external computer 9 and the operating status of the electronic data storage medium thereon.

Preferably, the processing unit 2 automatically initiates operation in the data resetting mode upon detecting that a preset time period has elapsed since storage of the data file and the fingerprint reference data in the memory device 3.

The following are some of the advantages of the present invention:

The electronic data storage medium has a small volume but a large storage capability in a compressed format, thereby resulting in convenience during data transfer.

Since everyone has a fingerprint different from that of the others, the electronic data storage card medium only permits authorized persons to access the data files stored therein, thereby resulting in enhanced security.

While the present invention has been described in connection with what is considered the most practical and preferred embodiment, it is understood that this invention is not limited to the disclosed embodiment but is intended to cover various arrangements included within the spirit and scope of the broadest interpretation so as to encompass all such modifications and equivalent arrangements.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
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Classifications
U.S. Classification711/163, 711/E12.098
International ClassificationG06F12/14, G06K19/073, G06K9/00, G06K19/07, G06F21/24, G06T7/00, G06F1/00, G06K19/10, G07C9/00, G06F21/00, G06F12/00
Cooperative ClassificationG06F21/78, G06K19/07, G06F21/32, G07C9/00087, G06F12/1416, G06K19/07354, G06K9/00087
European ClassificationG06F21/78, G06F21/32, G06K9/00A3, G06F12/14C, G06K19/07, G06K19/073A4A, G07C9/00B6D4