Gun Safety Technologies

Innovation falls in to two categories – Smart Guns and Safe Storage. Both are designed to provide the firearms owner, and only the owner or designated users, the safe, quick access to their guns. Curious or malevolent individuals cannot either access or operate these firearms. STCF has assisted in the discovery and commercialization in these two areas. To implement this innovative approach to gun ownership, our entrepreneurs have employed two core technologies.


Biometrics is a well recognized method of securing access to critical things.  One application of biometrics is fingerprint-access technology, which is widely used in smartphones and other security devices. Fingerprint scanners offer a simple solution to prevent unauthorized users from firing a gun while keeping access for gun owners quick and easy. When an authorized user accesses the gun’s fingerprint scanner, the scanner checks the print against its internal database, authenticating the user within a fraction of a second. An advantage of biometrics is that once set up, no additional equipment or effort is required to use it. Learn more about fingerprint-access technologies.


Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID) is a reliable, decades-old security technology familiar to anyone who has unlocked a car or entered a building with a key fob. RFID uses radio waves to read and capture information stored on a token linked to an object, like a ring or watch. In most RFID firearms designs, the token can unlock the trigger within a few inches of the firearm. When not in close proximity to the token, the gun stays completely secure in order to prevent others—especially children—from accidentally firing it. RFID technology is impervious to rain and mud and can be used while wearing gloves. Learn more about RFID technology. STCF’s innovators have put both of these technologies to work in gun safety implementations.

External Gun Locks and Safes

A wide array of both smart and mechanical external locks and safes are being developed to provide quicker, easier, and safer access to the existing 300+ million firearms in circulation. Since many gun owners want to have a firearm that is immediately accessible, these locking devices and safes provide a significantly safer way to store guns when not in a traditional safe. Gun Guardian’s biometric trigger lock and IDENTILOCK’s trigger lock are two examples of locks that provide owners access to their firearm in under one second. Vara’s Reach is a biometric gun safe that can be affixed to a bedside table. All these devices give gun owners options for safely securing their firearms.

Smart or Personalized Guns

Smart guns (or personalized guns) are firearms equipped with technology that enables them to only be fired by an authorized user or users. Smart guns have the potential to prevent injuries and deaths, including those due to unintentional shootings, suicides, and gun thefts. These personalized firearms which are in development can be enabled by biometric or RFID technology and some include a mechanical locking device as well.

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