Ever watched a crime show that used fingerprints to convict the suspect? Well, if the answer is yes then you might have thought of what is so special about those lines in your fingers. The ones that are barely visible with a naked eye. Ever thought that you and your family have similar fingerprints? Because they are merely lines that even look similar. Ever imagined about the prints changing with time? Well, if the answer is positive then, this is for you guys!
The fingerprint is one of the ancient identification tools used till date. The prominence of the evidence is due to its high rate of transfer and the uniqueness that it possesses. Your fingerprints are there on everything you touch, be it the table, the chair, your books, your door, or laptops. Most of it are the latent prints that are invisible to the naked eye.
LET’S GET AN IDEA ABOUT FINGERPRINTS!
The very first type is a latent print, the one most commonly observed. For making them visible under UV and IR, a spray of Luminol or Ninhydrin is the method.
The next type of print is patent print, it can be seen with the naked eye. The common ones are those stained in blood and oil etc. The third type of print is a plastic print which is a three dimensional print generally caused at surfaces, like mud, newly painted wall.
SEARCH FOR THE SHERLOCK IN YOU
You’ve encountered a fingerprint in a crime scene, what should be the method for its lifting? You can’t take the fingerprint like that.Tape lifting of the print is done and the tape is then transferred on the surface for examination. If the print is a latent one, then dusting with superglue fumes, Iodine fumes, Silver Nitrate, Ninhydrin and crystal violet makes it visible.
YOUR UNIQUENESS RUNS DOWN IN YOUR PRINTS
Here we are talking about how your fingerprints are unique? How is that they remain the same throughout your life? Well, the answer lies in the method of their formation. Fingerprints arrive as early as in three months in your Intra-Uterine life. Isn’t it amazing! Your fingerprints exist even before you are born. The pressure exerted causes compression in the skin leading to the formation of these unique patterns.
DISTINCTION IN FINGERPRINTS
Now let’s look at what makes them unique. Fingerprint characteristics are mainly of two types – class characters and individual characters. The most simple class characters are of four types including Archs, Loops, Whorls, and Composites.
Arch as the name suggests forms a pattern like an arch entering from the side of the finger, rising at the center and dropping out of the other side of the finger. If the print looks like a tent in the center, it is a tented arch. If the arch is absent in the center forming a smooth exit with a simple raise in the center, suggests the print is a plain arch.
Loops are present in about 60-70% of fingerprints. Here the ridge that entered from one side of the finger makes a turn backward and exits from the same side. They are of two types depending on the side of their entry and exit, if the side of their entry and exit is towards the thumbs, the print is a radial loop. The one that takes a back turn towards the index finger are the ulnar loop.
Ever noticed a circular formation in your fingers? That’s a whorl. The ridge that enters in makes a complete circle within your finger. It is seen in the Indian population frequently. The exception in this is the central pocket loop whorl which has a complete circle in the center but a non re-curving edge.
The other characteristics that make your fingerprint unique like you are the minute characteristics, such as dots, dash, fork, bifurcations, trifurcations, spur, bridge formations and lots more .
NOT ONLY PRINTS BUT NUMERICS
A unique number is present for you based on the patterns from the various formulas available. Values such as 17-c or 15-a are provided for identification based on the characters described above. Each character is stored as either 0 or 1 and then Richard’s formula is applied. This is not just what you’ve seen in movies, but a reality.
THE MAGIC CONTINUES
Not only known for the prints, but they give an insight into the lifestyle by a single analysis. Sweat contained on the tip is of individual origin. By analyzing, geographic area, your health, and a lot more could be known. Fingerprints lead to another world connecting one lead to another. Even after being studied from long back past, still, prints remain a matter of surprise. No doubt, fingerprints are a detective’s best friend.