Due to the increasing demand in secured applications, biometrics systems are becoming very important for many real world applications. A biometric system is essentially a pattern-recognition system that identifies a person based on feature vector derived from a specific physiological or behavioural characteristic that the person possesses. Over the years, biometric technologies based on face, fingerprint, DNA samples, speech, keystroke and other personal features have advanced to a great extent leading to sophisticated authentication systems. Though there is evidence of interest in the use of biometrics in selected areas such as crime detection and border security, studies indicate that the development of such biometric technologies has not been utilised to its full capacity in business and social communities due to socio-technical concerns. While much research focuses on the implementation enhancements relating to acquiring samples, feature extraction, digitizing and storage, pattern matching algorithms and fault tolerance, there is a paucity of research that focuses on the impact assessment of biometric systems on communities. This paper identifies the motivating factors as well as major challenges that biometric systems face from the perspective of the impact of technology, cost, privacy and social issues on communities. It analyses such impact on communities through various scenarios in societies, businesses and government. Based on the study, we believe that a suitable knowledge-shared ICT implementation framework is required to successfully harness the benefits of biometrics systems in communities. Hence, in this paper, we propose a knowledge-based adaptive framework that overcomes these challenges through a selectively shared knowledge management approach among various organisations, government bodies, societies and other communities. We believe this would be a step towards achieving highly secured communities that make use of biometric systems effectively. Copyright © 2008 COSI.