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New Finnish technology will prevent unauthorized use of mobile devices


The new technology developed by VTT, Technical Research Centre of Finland makes it possible to identify the user based on her or his physical movements such as walking style. This feature prevents unauthorised use of portable devices such as laptops or mobile phones. In the future, credit cards may also verify user’s identify based on their physical movements before approval of payment transactions.

For the user the new identification system offers the advantages of increased security and reduction of risk in situations where a portable computer, mobile phone or other digital device has ended up in the wrong hands because of loss or theft. The device will become non-usable in the wrong hands. For example, the identity of a mobile phone user can be verified before the phone can be used for banking transactions. Compared with passwords and traditional bioidentification, the new method is simple: confirmation of identity takes place as a background process without any need for user’s intervention.

A device is equipped with sensors that measure certain characteristics of the user’s gait. When the device is used for the first time, these measurements are saved in its memory. In normal use the device continuously measures the user’s gait and compares these measurements with the values in its memory. If they are sufficiently identical, the device identifies and approves the user. If the values differ, standard password-based identification is available.

Gait-based identification is based on advanced computation, where the measured signals are first filtered and then certain parameters – the so-called ‘gaitcode’ – are calculated. In initial tests the identification rate was over 90%.

VTT has started IPR protection process for the invention.

Irene Hernberg | alfa
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