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Fingerprint Terms


Fingerprint Classification The sorting of fingerprints into file groups. Classified by general shape, position and size.
Ridge Characteristics A fingerprint pattern in which the ridge pattern flows inward and returns to the direction of the origin.
Invisible Fingerprints Those not readily seen but that can be developed through powders or chemicals.
Inked Fingerprint The intentional recording of the friction ridge skin using black printer's ink.
Latent Fingerprint Print impressions caused by perspiration on the ridges of the fingers being transferred to a surface or occurring as residues of oil, dirt or grease.
Patent Fingerprint Impressions left in soft substances such as putty, grease, tar, butter or soft soap.
Arches An arch goes from one side of the finger to another.
Loops A loop starts and ends at the same side, which is the side of the opening.
Whorls A whorl is roughly circular, with the ridge lines going all the way around.
Voice Prints Graphic record of an individual's voice characteristics made by a sound spectrograph that recors energy patterns emitted by speech.
Science Basis of Fingerprint Identification The ridge arrangement on every finger of every person is different.
A.F.I.S. a computer system that automatically searches a latent fingerprint recovered from a scene.
Dissimilarity a difference in which, in the opinion of the examiner, can be explained.
Discrepancy a difference between two patterns that can not be explained.
Dactylography the study of the of fingerprints.
Core center of the finger pattern impression.
Individualization the matching of a latent print to one person as its source to the exclusion of all other people in the world.
Class One/ Level One Detail the general ridge flow of a fingerprint.
Class Two/ Level Two a particular ridge path, including bifurcations, endings, divisions; also referred to as minutiae or Galton's details.
Class Three/ Level Three finer detail concerning individual ridges, such as the shape of the edges, their width, and the pores.
ACE-V Stands for Analysis, Comparison, Evaluation, Verification. ACE-V describes the process for comparison of a latent print to a known print.
Created by: Hunter F.