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BLOG: Will we embrace biometrics to replace passwords? FIDO authentication at CES 2014

Darlene Storm | Jan. 8, 2014
Dozens of new personal tech products at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2014 use biometrics to scan fingerprints, palm prints and irises, utilize facial recognition, eye tracking, voice recognition and even monitor behavior. While there’s nothing inherently evil about biometrics, who controls all the collected personal data?

Sonavation AXISKEYSonavation unveiled its AXISKEY key fob to serve as a “personal ultrasound biometric identity device” with “better than federal-grade data encryption.” It provides “BYOB (Bring Your Own Biometric)” and “safeguards an individual's personal, social, and workplace accounts, as well as their online identity and transactions with a swipe of their finger.”

Eyelock wants to use your iris to replace your password. The company showed off myris, a USB-enabled iris identity authenticator that “virtually eliminates the need for usernames or passwords.”

Eye-scanning, however, can be used for purposes that have nothing to do with enhancing security. Tobii, a company that claims to be “the world leader in eye tracking and gaze interaction,” wants eye tracking tech to be part of our daily lives. Tobii eye-tracking software allows “computers to know exactly where users are looking” has been embraced by Amazon, PayPal and Google to analyze user behavior. It can tell where you are gazing, or what you ignore on a website, as well as read pupils to determine interests and moods such as if the user is aroused. Tobii suggested that one day “Netflix could use mood-sensing technology to recommend movies with better accuracy.”

It is these "other" uses for biometrics that is concerning. Privacy policies constantly change . . . and usually the user loses out. Whoever stores our biometrics had better secure it well as surely the NSA would love to hoover it all up and store it for eternity. The better to make sure you're not a terrorist, you know, just in case. Are you ready to embrace biometrics as a replacement for passwords?

Source: Computerworld


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