With great technology, comes great responsibility! As the capabilities of our digital gadgets and mobile devices continue to increase, so does the need for higher levels of data security.
Accessing e-mail, updating social media accounts, sharing photos and videos, conducting bank transactions, shopping for various products, setting appointments with the doctor, making and receiving phone calls and SMS messages, are merely on the tip of the technological iceberg.
Unfortunately, with the multitude of tasks we carry out with our beloved gadgets, we also expose more of ourselves and our sensitive personal information to a greater number of people than ever before. A hacked social media or e-mail account, an insecure online banking transaction, a compromised web store purchase, or a stolen tablet or mobile phone can bring a truckload of problems to our doorstep. This vulnerability created by our dependence on our gadgets requires that we take additional measures to increase our online data security.
The following are security technologies which are available or are in development for commercial use….
Experts say that in a few years, many, if not all, of these data security-enhancing features will be staples on many of our gadgets (including our tablets and smartphones).
1. Face recognition software
Some high-end devices now support face recognition as a form of security. The powerful camera hooked to the desktop or built into the laptop scans the user’s face and opens the related user account. If the face is not recognized, the unit does not turn on. Talk about taking it at face value.
2. Fingerprint verification
Because each pattern is said to be unique to each person, the fingerprint has been the go-to security measure for decades. Similar to the facial recognition feature mentioned above, many laptops and desktops now support a fingerprint verification system. However, with the increasing power of touch and pressure sensitive panels found in our gadgets, it will not be soon before we have screens which can scan the swirls and ridges on our fingers. Definitely redefines security at your fingertips, doesn’t it?
3. Retina scanners
Some of the world’s most secure facilities have used the retina scan as a default protective measure for years. Since every person’s retina is unique much like the fingerprint, the retina scan significantly increases a system’s security rating. Now, similar applications are being developed for home use. With the more advanced cameras found in our favorite gadgets, this idea is not far-fetched. Recently, a smartphone manufacturer has developed an eye-scrolling feature for one of their models so we can definitely “see” this happening in the near future.
4. Voice recognition software
Just like the fingerprint, the vocal tone and patterns are unique to each individual. This is the reason why the security industry has employed voice recognition technology for a long time. However, recent developments in consumer electronics have included voice recognition software as free additions to many devices. It is logical to think that the technology will be utilized by hardware manufacturers and application developers as a form to increase consumer security in the next few years if not months. This certainly reinforces the ‘word’ in password.
Imagine these ‘up-and-coming’ data security features combined with GPS capabilities, remote access features, and other technologies currently available to us. Combine it with a well-armed technological awareness and good old-fashioned common sense, then the job for hackers, information thieves and gadget nappers just got a little more complicated.
True, these are not widely available as of now so our own knowledge and ‘smarts’ are our primary and most effective measure for data security but it definitely will not be long before we experience more of these technologies first hand. And so we wait…