A secretive US Defense Department project is aimed at replacing passwords and even biometrics with ‘patterns of life’, reports Signal.
The idea is to use various sensors embedded in mobile devices to track things like gait, frequented locations, work patterns, and other incidental data in order to verify a subject’s identity. It’s similar to an ambition revealed by Google’s cutting edge R&D team last year in that the end goal is essentially passive authentication, with users’ mobile devices providing a continuous stream of data that can be used to establish a trust score indicating the likelihood that the device is in the hands or pocket of its rightful user.
For the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), it’s a matter of making work easier for any given soldier in the field. Speaking to Signal, DISA Cyber Development Innovation Cell leader Jeremy Corey explained that a given soldier may wear gloves that hinder fingerprint recognition, or might need to wear goggles, asking, “Are you going to expect the warfighter to remove their goggles to do facial recognition?”
Signal reports that DISA officials suggest the patterns of life authentication system will likely complement public key security infrastructure, and that they are also exploring how behavioral patterns pertaining to PC use – typing cadence and mouse movements, for example – could also be used for authentication, echoing the growing popularity of such behavioral biometrics systems in the financial services sector and elsewhere.
DISA officials expect to offer a contract for the project soon, and anticipate that a prototype could emerge in about half a year.
August 2, 2017 – by Alex Perala