A Fourth Amendment Framework for Voiceprint Database Searches

Voiceprint technology works by first securing an initial recording of a known individual. For example, a prison may ask an incarcerated individual to provide a sample voice recording; a bank may record a client once the client goes through an alternate verification process. The technology then analyzes hundreds of components of that user’s voice and creates a voiceprint, which is stored in a database and associated with that individual. When subsequent calls are made, the technology creates a new voiceprint and compares that to the known voiceprint to confirm the caller’s identity. This matching process parallels that of other biometric verification processes such as DNA and fingerprint matching.