Gun Safety Technologies:
What Are Smart Guns?
Smart guns are firearms equipped with technology that enables them to only be fired by an authorized user or users. Smart guns have the potential to prevent injuries and deaths, including those due to unintentional shootings, suicides, and gun thefts. These personalized firearms can be enabled by biometric or RFID technology, which can either be built into guns during manufacturing or retrofitted onto some of the 300 million existing guns in circulation.
Two Types of Gun Safety Technologies
One application of biometrics is fingerprint-access technology, which is widely used in smartphones and other security devices. Fingerprint scanners offer a simple solution to prevent unauthorized users from firing a gun while keeping access for gun owners quick and easy. When an authorized user accesses the gun’s fingerprint scanner, the scanner checks the print against its internal database, authenticating the user within a fraction of a second. Learn more about fingerprint-access technologies.
Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) is a reliable, decades-old security technology familiar to anyone who has unlocked a car or entered a building with a key fob. RFID uses radio waves to read and capture information stored on a token linked to an object, like a ring or watch. In most RFID firearms designs, the token can unlock the trigger within a few inches of the firearm. When not in close proximity to the token, the gun stays completely secure in order to prevent others—especially children—from accidentally firing it. RFID technology is impervious to rain and mud and can be used while wearing gloves. Learn more about RFID technology.
External Gun Locks and Safes:
A wide array of both smart and mechanical external locks and safes are being developed to provide quicker, easier, and safer access to the existing 300+ million firearms in circulation. Since many gun owners want to have a firearm that is immediately accessible, these locking devices and safes provide a significantly safer way to store guns when not in a traditional safe.
Gun Guardian’s biometric trigger lock and IDENTILOCK’s trigger lock are two examples of locks that provide owners access to their firearm in under one second. Vara’s Reach is a biometric gun safe that can be affixed to a bedside table. All these devices give gun owners options for safely securing their firearms.