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Fingerprint market to reach $2.1 billion by 2013

Published 25 March 2008

The fingerprinting/biometrics segment will reach $940 million in 2008 and $2.1 billion by 2013; next five years will be a boon to forensic technologies

According to a new technical market research report from Wellesely, Massachusetts-based BCC Research, the U.S. market for forensic products and services was worth $9.5 billion in 2007. This is expected to increase to $10.3 billion in 2008 and more than $17.5 billion by 2013, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.3 percent. The market is broken down into applications of fingerprinting/biometrics, DNA testing, analytical instruments and supplies, and others, which includes computer forensics, forensic databases, and forensics consulting. Of these, the “others” segment has the largest share of the market. Valued at $7.7 billion in 2007, this segment is expected to be worth $8.2 billion in 2008 and $13.1 billion by the end of 2013, a CAGR of 10 percent.

DNA testing is expected to increase at a 14.6 percent CAGR, from roughly $1 billion in 2008 to more than $2 billion by 2013. DNA testing has become the definitive forensic technology. DNA testing volumes have increased dramatically since the implementation of the federal Justice for All Act. The Act makes post-conviction DNA testing available to anyone declaring his or her innocence in federal cases. This program alone has had $1 billion in funding. It offers incentives for states to adopt DNA testing policies and streamline the significant backlog of 350,000 untested DNA evidence samples in various criminal cases.

The fingerprinting/biometrics segment will reach $940 million in 2008 and $2.1 billion by the end of the study period, for a CAGR of 17.9 percent. Fingerprinting continues to move rapidly away from ink-based methods to biometric technologies such as electronic fingerprinting and electronic scanners.

Technological advancements in forensics have been of considerable import in recent years, with recent examples including enhanced fingerprint recovery from metals; using the chemistry of color to identify chemical and biological weapons; and portable DNA profiling techniques used at crime scenes. These advancements have reduced per unit costs in practical applications, enhanced the affordability of forensics application and increased their market penetration.