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GMAC® Tests Biometric Security for GMAT®


As part of ongoing efforts to ensure the security of the Graduate Management Admission Test® (GMAT®) exam by using the most sophisticated technologies available, the Graduate Management Admission Council® (GMAC®) recently field-tested three biometric technologies that could be employed in the future to confirm the identities of test takers. The technologies are electronic fingerprinting, one of the security measures recently implemented at 115 U.S. airports and 14 seaports to check passengers’ fingerprints against those on file with law enforcement and security agencies; electronic signature; and digital image capture.

Electronic fingerprinting and handwriting sampling are technological enhancements to traditional methods of identification, but digital image capture is relatively new. The technology not only records a digital image of a person’s outward appearance, it also digitally records the unique measurements of the individual’s facial structure. The result is that, using the digital image capture technology, a single GMAT® test taker could be identified as a unique individual, even if his or her outward appearance changed from one GMAT® test date to another. The digital image capture method is much more reliable than the use of photo identification alone, which relies on a test proctor to visually match a test taker to a photograph (often an out-of-date photograph).

The field tests of the new biometric security measures were conducted during November 2003 and December 2003 at two U.S. test centers, one Canadian test center, and one Costa Rican test center. People scheduled to take the GMAT® exam at the test centers participating in the field tests were notified in advance of the mandatory biometric security measures. They were given free MBA Survival Kit® course preparation software in return for their participation.

The field tests were conducted for the purpose of evaluating security technologies that may be used in the future to complement security measures already in place.

GMAC® will continue to research the most advanced test security measures available and will keep you apprised of any changes to current GMAT® test security protocols.

Graduate Management Admission Council®, GMAC®, Graduate Management Admission Test®, GMAT®, and MBA Survival Kit® are registered trademarks of the Graduate Management Admission Council®. All rights reserved.
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