Brain Fingerprinting Law and Legal Definition

Brain fingerprinting is a new forensic technology that involves brain wave monitoring with an electroencephalograph (EEG) machine. The waves are interpreted to determine if potentially incriminating information is stored in a person's memory. The technique, based on monitoring a scientifically established brain wave response known as the P300, registers a person's recognition or lack of recognition of intimate details related to a crime, that would be known only to the perpetrator and investigator. A computer displays brain wave responses to words, phrases, or pictures to test the person's "guilty knowledge".

Brain fingerprinting tests are not currently widely accepted as admissible in court. However, brain fingerprinting results recently were allowed into evidence, along with other newly discovered evidence,and helped a man convicted of murder in 1978 get a new trial. Due to the lack of established legal precedent for its use, it is a hotly debated subject in evidence law.