The surprising way is that the selfies are fueling phone design

It started with Apple’s Touch ID and Alibaba’s “pay for selfies”. Now, companies are building deep biological portraits to secure our phones.

When Apple introduced the iPhone 5s in 2013, its built-in Touch ID kicked off the race to invent innovative, personalized passcodes. Sure, the old style password model has been around for decades, but why not opt ​​out of finger touch when having to remember (and enter) credentials? Apple’s Touch ID has introduced fingerprints as a means of authentication, but that is only an early indication of companies’ growing interest in bio-data. From the vocal timbre to the patterns of body movements to your heart rate, the human body offers a half a dozen more captivating, less hacked ways to enter passwords.

Biometric authentication applications are booming. In 2015, users downloaded 6 million such apps, according to our data Research juniperand by 2019, that number is expected to reach 770 million. Furthermore, starting next year, all smartphones will integrate biometric capabilities, according to the research firm. Acuity.

Phil Dunkelberger, CEO of the security platform, said that no advances in biometrics have been more impressive than in camera phone technology. Nok Nok Labs. Mobile manufacturers have been preparing to put a relatively old technology into the authentication mix: smartphones’ most loved and most popular byproducts, selfies. For example, in a landmark 2015 demo, Alibaba CEO Jack Ma showed how he could mount a phone’s camera to allow payments.

Taking a selfie to get access to a sensitive app or releasing a payment sounds fun and trending, or it sounds like a silly stunt. In fact, it heralded the start of a broader trend in which phones created detailed biological portraits and detailed user behavior. One photo is never enough to confirm an identity. Instead, our phones will have to record a lot of data about how we live our lives.

Just like a credit card company marking a sudden purchase in Tahiti, mobile manufacturers are now teaching our devices to see subtle signs of authentication – or a case. hack. In the not too distant future, our phones will be able to register if we leave our daily activities or wave our hands in an unusual way. It’s a change mobile manufacturers believe we’ll be more than happy to make, for the convenience of one-swipe savings.

“I have a strong dream to help small businesses, ” to speak Alibaba’s Jack Ma. That was the end of his presentation at the annual CeBIT technology conference in Hannover, Germany. Just two years after Apple introduced Touch ID, Ma announced a technology that can turn taking selfies on your phone into a secure step – a way to authenticate your identity to complete a purchase. online.

Behind him is a giant projection of a smartphone; on its display, a 1948 commemorative stamp, was sold through Alibaba’s e-commerce site for 20 euros. The classic stamp hung behind him. All Ma had to do, he told the audience, was to smile at his phone, and that was enough for the company’s new facial recognition tool to validate his purchase.

With her smartphone, Ma took a selfie projected onto the wall behind him. His face is outlined by a sparkling white line for identification. Between the dizzying light show of the code and the graphics running, his purchase was a hit. In six days, the stamp, a gift, will arrive at the local mayor’s office, he told the crowd.

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