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On seeing a previously known information, a specific measurable brain response known as a P300 or MERMER i.e. M emory and Encoding Related Multifaceted Electroencephalographic Response , is elicited by the brain of a subject.
What is P300/ MERMER ?
A MERMER is a part of the brainwave observed in response to familiar information.
When the brain recognizes something, neurons are fired synchronously, eliciting characteristic changes in brain activity.
It is these changes, that investigators look for when trying to determine whether someone recognizes a particular piece of information.
When a person is exposed to a rare, but meaningful information, there is increase in neuron activity which results in an increase in voltage, typically within 300 – 1000msec after the stimulus, and that response with increases voltage is known as P300.
The utility of the P300 in detection of deception was recognized as early as 1988, However, the P300 has only a 87.5% success rate in revealing the presence of relevant information in one ’ s brain.
But Farwell’s test is based on the discovery that the P300 is only a subcomponent of a more complicated response called a MERMER.
The MERMER, includes the P300 and another longer latency, electrically negative subcomponent with a latency of up to two seconds post-stimulus
It incorporates the following procedure:
A sequence of words, phrases, or pictures is presented on a video monitor to the subject, wearing a special headband designed for detecting the brain wave responses.
Three types of stimuli are presented: 1.Target 2. Irrelevant 3. Probe
Target : The target stimuli are made relevant and noteworthy to all subjects.
Irrelevant : These have no relation to the situation under investigation.
Probes : Probes are the stimuli that are relevant to the situation under investigation.
The targets provide a template for a response that will be generated when a subject recognizes a stimuli familiar to the situation under investigation.
The irrelevant provide a template, for a response that will be generated when a subject don ’ t recognizes a stimuli familiar to the situation under investigation.
For each probe stimulus, there are approximately four irrelevant stimuli and one target stimuli.
The targets, since they are recognized and require a particular response, are noteworthy for all subjects.
The irrelevant are not noteworthy for any subjects.
The probes are noteworthy only to the subjects who have the knowledge specific to the situation under investigation.
A subject lacking specific information relevant to the situation under investigation recognizes only two types of stimuli: Targets & Irrelevents.
A subject with specific information relevant to the situation under investigation, however, recognizes all three types of stimuli: Targets Irrelevents & probes.
The main function of our experimental design is, to create a two-stimulus series for an individual without the specific information under investigation, and a three-stimulus series (with the same stimuli) for an individual who possesses knowledge of the specific information under investigation.
The determination of information present in one ’ s brain consists of comparing the probe responses to the target responses, which contain a P300/MERMER, as both are noteworthy to the subject.
The determination of information absent in one ’ s brain consists of comparing the probe responses to the irrelevant responses, as both are not familiar to the subject and do not elicit a P300/MERMER.
This pattern occurs within less than a second after the stimulus presentation, and can be readily detected using EEG amplifiers and a computerized signal-detection algorithm.
In order for the test to be an effective indicator of knowledge or lack thereof, stimuli must be structured such that only a knowledgeable person would recognize the probe stimuli.
The entire Brain Fingerprinting system is under computer control, including presentation of the stimuli, recording of electrical brain activity, a mathematical data analysis algorithm that compares the responses to the three types of stimuli and produces a determination of "information absent" or "information present.“
Results have shown this technique to be capable of producing an "information absent" or "information present" determination, with a strong statistical confidence, in approximately 90% of the cases studied. All of the determinations were accurate. In the other 10% of cases the mathematical algorithm determined that there was insufficient information to make determination
a data acquisition board
a graphics card for driving two monitors from one PC
a four-channel EEG amplifier system
software developed by the Brain Fingerprinting Laboratories for data acquisition and analysis.
Comparisons with other technologies
Fingerprints and DNA are available in only 1% of crimes. The brain and the evidence recorded in it are always there.
No questions are asked and no answers are given during Farwell Brain Fingerprinting.
Brain Fingerprinting technology depends only on brain information processing, it does not depend on the emotional response of the subject.
There are several other areas in which Brain fingerprinting can be used to make life easier and can aid mankind in many ways. Key fields where brain fingerprinting can be used are:
What specific information do people retain from advertising?
What specific elements in an ad campaign have the most impact?
How effective is the product branding strategy?
Aid in determining who has participated in terrorist acts, directly or indirectly.
Help to identify people who have knowledge or training in banking, finance or communications and who are associated with terrorist teams and acts.
With early diagnosis, the progression of Alzheimer's symptoms can often be delayed through medications and dietary and lifestyle changes.
Using the very precise measurements of cognitive functioning available with this technology, pharmaceutical companies will be able to determine more quickly the effects of their new medications.
Identify criminals quickly and scientifically
Record of 100% accuracy
Identify terrorists and members of gangs, criminal and intelligence organizations
Reduce expenditure of money and other resources in law enforcement
Reduce evasion of justice.
Access criminal evidence in the brain
Fingerprints and DNA, though accurate and highly useful, can only be collected in approximately 1% of all criminal cases brain is always there.
Human Rights oriented.
It would be inappropriate to generalize the results of the present research because of the small sample of subjects.
But the 100% accuracy and high confidence level of the results, however, provide further support for results from previous research using brain MERMER testing.
Additional research is required to determine if brain MERMER testing is a technique which could tell an investigator that a particular person possesses this detailed knowledge.
Additionally, if research determines that brain MERMER testing is reliable enough that it could be introduced as evidence in court, it may be the major criminal investigative tool of the future.