Veridicom Inc., a Lucent Technologies spinoff, teamed up with Hewlett-Packard Co. and the smart card manufacturer Gemplus for a demonstration of fingerprint authentication at the recent Comdex convention in Las Vegas.

The companies said they took network security to "a new level" in controlling access to a personal computer through insertion of a smart card. Matching the card's fingerprint template with a scan of the finger makes a personal identification number unnecessary.

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