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Presentation by
ROLL: 2010-1041
What is Brain Fingerprinting?

Brain fingerprinting is a computer based

technology designed to determine hidden
information in individual’s brain by measuring
electrical brain wave responses to words,
phrases, or pictures presented on a computer

Brain fingerprints are measured by an EEG

event-related potential, a P300-MERMER.
Specific, measurable brain
response emitted by the brain of a
subject who has the relevant
information stored in his brain.
It is based on Oddball Paradigm.


Memory and Encoding Related

It is a patented device and comes
along with a head gear.

FIG : Showing the experimental setup

Picture/word Triggers neurons Electrical
shown to an Potentials
individual of brain Accumulate in
(Stimulus) brain

Headgear fitted
Electrodes placed
on scalp

Study P300 –MERMER

Generates analog
EEG (an scalp ERP
Found Guilty/ EEG)
the data amplifier
Not guilty signals
Using a Measures
computer brainwaves
Types of Stimuli Used
• Probes
– Life-experience related
– Relevant to the investigated event -recognizable and noteworthy only
for the subjects who had participated in the event (MERMER)
• Targets
– Push a button to indicate known image
– Contains relevant information
– Creates a baseline
• Irrelevant Stimuli
– information relevant to the crime that the suspect claims to have no
knowledge of
How Brain Waves are used to detect guilt?
A suspect is tested by looking at three kinds of information
represented by different colored lines :
RED : Information the suspect is expected to know
It arises due to target type stimulus.
GREEN: Information not to suspect. The irrelevant stimuli
is responsible for this type of brain waves.
BLUE: Information of the crime that only perpetrator
would know. This occurs due to probes.
In this figure the red and
Information regarding the
blue lines are closely
crime is not known.
correlated, suspect has
knowledge of crime
Phases of Brain Fingerprinting
There are four stages to Brain Fingerprinting:

1. Crime Scene Evidence Collection: Gathering evidences from

crime scenes
2. Brain Evidence Collection: A specialist checks whether the
crime scene evidence matches evidence stored in brain.

3. Computer Evidence Analysis: Computerized analysis is done

on the brain evidences and statistical methods are
applied to move to the next phase.

4. Scientific Result: Finding whether the person is guilty or not

Features of Brain Fingerprinting
The interpretation in brain fingerprinting is to look for P300 as response to stimuli
related to crime in question, e.g. a murder weapon or a victim’s face.

It is based on EEG signals, the system does not require the testee to issue a verbal
response to questions or stimuli

It uses cognitive brain responses, and it does not depend on the emotions of the
subject, nor is it affected by emotional responses

It is different from polygraph(lie-detector), which measures emotion-based

physiological signals such as heart rate, sweating and blood pressure

Unlike polygraph testing, it does not attempt to determine whether the subject is
lying or telling the truth.
• The entire Brain Fingerprinting System is under computer
control. The computer control includes:

Presentation of the stimuli

Recording of electrical brain activity

Mathematical data analysis algorithm that compares the

responses of the 3 stimulus

Determination of information present or information

Case Studies
• Macon County, Missouri Sheriff Robert Dawson engaged Dr.
Farwell to conduct a Brain Fingerprinting test on murder
suspect James B. Grinder. The test proved that the record
stored in Grinder’s brain matched the scene of the murder of
Julie Helton.

• Brain Fingerprinting could detect trained terrorists even

before they strike.
• Farwell LA, Donchin E., “The brain detector: P300 in the detection
of deception. Psychophysiology”
• Kumar Ravi, “Brain Fingerprinting”, Compusoft -An international
journal of advanced computer technology, 1 (2), Dec-2012 (Volume-
I, Issue-II)
• Farwell LA, Donchin E., “Brain Fingerprinting”
• Wikipedia Brain Fingerprinting