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Researchers mimic board game to bolster computer security

Antone Gonsalves | July 3, 2013
By studying the memory game Concentration, they hope to lay the groundwork for highly accurate bot-detection programs.

Further research will be needed to develop programs that can detect humans based on the way the keyboard and mouse are being used. This would replace the use of logs and IP addresses in watching for bots.

While it would be possible for criminals to simulate keyboard and mouse use by a person, the expense of doing so would make such bots impractical, St. Amant said.

Beyond just discovering bots, St. Amant said he believes future research on keystroke and mice dynamics could help scientists identify malice. How a person is using the devices "can actually tell something about the probability that you're trying to be a little bit deceptive," he said.

The ability to analyze security-related intent based on how people use the devices that interact with their computers will likely be programmed into software within the next five years, Amant said.

"Systems already exist to track people's mouse movements and keyboard actions in some kinds of games," Amant said. "This is just a matter of building the monitoring tools and raising flags to a human security person."


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