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Conformance Test Architecture for Biometric Data Interchange Formats - Version Beta 2.0



Fernando L. Podio, Dylan J. Yaga, Mark Jerde


The success of biometric applications is particularly dependent on the interoperability of biometric systems. Deploying these systems requires a comprehensive portfolio of biometric standards developed in support of interoperability and data interchange. A number of these domestic and international standards have been published and others are under development. The existence of these standards alone is not enough to demonstrate that products meet the technical requirements specified in the standards. Conformance testing captures the technical description of a specification and measures whether an implementation faithfully implements the specification. The Computer Security Division of NIST/ITL supports conformity assessment efforts through active technical participation in the development of conformance testing methodology standards and the development of associated conformance test architectures (CTA) and test suites (CTS). This NIST IR discusses the technological characteristics of the recently released CTA Beta 2.0. This architecture supports CTSs such as the ones designed to test implementations of biometric data interchange data formats. The information provided includes CTA modules communication methods, key CTA features and high-level sequence diagrams. It also addresses an introduction to testing binary data, structure testing by groups of fields and a discussion on test cases. Ongoing work on related tools development is also addressed.
NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR) - 7771
Report Number


binary data testing, biometrics, conformance test architecture, conformance testing, data interchange, standard implementations, test cases


Podio, F. , Yaga, D. and Jerde, M. (2011), Conformance Test Architecture for Biometric Data Interchange Formats - Version Beta 2.0, NIST Interagency/Internal Report (NISTIR), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed April 21, 2024)
Created February 28, 2011, Updated November 10, 2018