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A biometric template is a

[s]et of stored biometric features comparable directly to biometric features of a recognition biometric sample.[1]
a stored record of an individual's biometric features. Typically, a "livescan" of an individual's biometric attributes is translated through a specific algorithm into a digital record that can be stored in a database or on an integrated circuit chip card. The formatted digital record used to store the biometric attributes is generally referred to as the biometric template.[2]
a digital representation of an individual's distinct characteristics, representing information extracted from a biometric sample. Biometric templates are what are actually compared in a biometric recognition system.[3]


A biometric reference consisting of an image, or other captured biometric sample, in its original, enhanced or compressed form, is not a biometric template.[4]

The biometric features are not considered to be a biometric template unless they are stored for reference.[5]


  1. Biometrics Identity Management Agency, Biometrics Glossary, at 14 (Ver. 5) (Oct. 2010) (full-text).
  2. Government Smart Card Handbook, App. A, at A-1.
  3. Biometrics Frequently Asked Questions, at 2 (Sept. 7, 2006) (full-text).
  4. Id.
  5. Id.