My question about fingerprint biometric scanner was migrated to IT Security. I think I made it clear that the question is about consumer features of these devices, e.g. speed of detection, reliability, etc., not strictly security. I think IT Security is a wrong place to ask this question, and it is on-topic on SU.

Even if it is not clear, I would have amended my question if I saw "migrate" votes, but my question was just kicked out by a diamond moderator...

If this question was simply closed, there are re-open votes, and clear path how to reverse a wrong "close" decision. However, once a question is migrated, Is there anything I can do to "appeal" this migration?

  • The main concern when buying a fingerprint biometric scanner should be security, or you would have no gain from buying such device (unless you can't use other more secure input methods). For any device that you buy the speed of detection is normally fair, and the consumer feature "reliability" is actually part of security. The speed of the detection is listed in the technical sheets of fingerprint biometric scanners; so, this only leaves us to explain the security, which is the task of IT Security. Unless you have other consumer feature examples? Commented Dec 30, 2011 at 5:58

2 Answers 2


As a Security mod, and prompted by one of the security community, I asked the SU mods to send it over. The requirements you have in the question are all ones that the security community can answer as we have to deal with these questions in the day job anyway. The IT community generally doesn't have to deal with this type of thing.

You already have one answer which has should go part way to answering your specific needs - and if there haven't been any others by the middle of tomorrow I'll pop in an answer, as I have had to look at exactly these factors previously.

If you do still think it is in the wrong place after that, please speak to us, but I can't think of any site more on-topic for it.

  • You, as an IT Security moderator, obviously know better what is on topic there and what isn't. I misunderstood your target audience, since your FAQ says "IT Security - Stack Exchange is for Information Security professionals". And I'd love to see a more practical answer to my question...
    – haimg
    Commented Dec 30, 2011 at 18:26

Let me start by saying that you've come to the right place to appeal.

While you made it clear that it is not a shopping recommendation, there's another clause in our FAQ that could have made it off-topic:

SU is not about: electronic devices, media players, cell phones or smart phones, except insofar as they interface with your computer

So it depends on whether you view a biometric scanner as computer hardware or an electronic device.

Either way, I believe that the guys over at IT Security should be able to give you a better answer, because these devices are there to secure your IT and they know more about that than I do.

Still, if you have any convincing arguments, the decision can easily be reversed, so this doesn't have to be the end of the line.

  • 3
    I think a difference between a generic electronic device and strictly computer hardware is that a generic electronic device (media player, smart phone, etc.) can be used without a computer, whereas a computer hardware is meaningless without one. A fingerprint scanner is just an interface between a human hand and a computer, exactly like a mouse or a keyboard, cannot be used for anything without a computer, and therefore clearly a computer hardware.
    – haimg
    Commented Dec 29, 2011 at 21:42
  • 2
    @haimg: Super User is more about interfacing the fingerprint scanner with your computer, IT Security is more about the security of the fingerprint scanner. We can't really tell you how image size, platen size, sensing area size, DPI, image grayscale and distortion, used light source and its tolerance and imaging speed; as well as support for standards like ISO 19794, INCITS 378, BioAPI and patents like SEIR and US Patent # 6973573 will affect your security when using such an electronic device. The best you can do yourself is going for simple review comparison or for heavy research... Commented Dec 30, 2011 at 5:52
  • @TomWijsman With the same argument, you kill the topics about keyboard key switches types. If it were only about interfacing, we would care about keyboard layouts and scan codes, but not about the differences in mechanical key switches.
    – Daniel Beck Mod
    Commented Dec 30, 2011 at 8:21
  • @DanielBeck: The mechanical switches are part of the interface, yet keyboard key switches have nothing to do with IT security. Note that on old computer terminals keyboards were actually part of the computer, so it's slightly different from an interfacing electronic device. And even these days, can you imagine using a computer without a keyboard? But then, that doesn't even matter. This question is about consumer features of fingerprint biometric scanners, which is until shown otherwise mainly about its security. Which is an off-topic matter on Super User, as its not about interfacing... Commented Dec 30, 2011 at 9:07

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