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Thanks to Mr. James Bond, we are aware that diamonds are forever but, are fingerprints? It is well known that biometrics brings to the security field a new paradigm; unlike traditional systems, individuals are not identified by something that they have or they know, but by what they are. While such an approach entails some clear advantages, an important question remains: is what we are today the same as what we will be tomorrow? This paper addresses such a key problem in the fingerprint modality based on a database of over 400K impressions coming from more than 250K different fingers. The database was acquired under real operational conditions and contains fingerprints from subjects aged 0-25 and 65-98 years. Fingerprint pairs were collected with a time difference that ranges between 0 and 7 years. Such a unique set of data has allowed us to analyze both the age and ageing effects, shedding some new light into issues, such as fingerprint permanence and fingerprint quality.
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