Biometric System That Uses Human Skull To Give Access

Posted: May 15 2016, 2:12pm CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

Biometric System That Uses Human Skull to Give Access
SkullConduct uses the bone conduction speaker and microphone readily integrated into the eyewear computer and analyses the characteristic frequency response of an audio signal sent through the user’s skull.

At a time when privacy has become a major issue, scientists from Germany have developed a Google Glass-based biometric system that uses the skull to provide access to devices.

Computer scientists from the University of Saarland and the University of Stuttgart in Germany has introduced a new system "SkullConduct" which uses the skull to provide a digital access code which could be used to secure smartphones.

"Eyewear computers such as Google Glass are already being used in companies and universities, for helping with physics experiments and in chemistry labs, documenting medical examinations and assisting pediatricians during operations," said Andreas Bulling from the Cluster of Excellence at the Saarland University.

"Not only may the users have no hands free to enter a password, they often share a Google Glass among each other and save sensitive data on the device," Bulling explained.

The researchers used components of the Google Glass such as miniature microphone, and bone conduction speaker, which is embedded in the frame near the right ear.

Using bone conduction, it transmits sounds to the ear in the same way as special hearing aids do. It directs sound vibrations through the surrounding skull bone directly to the inner ear.

"Because the skull is individual, the sound signal is changed in a way which is unique for every person. Hence, we can use it as a biometric identifier," Bulling added.

The new method showed an accuracy of 97 percent.

The researchers reported details of the method at the conference "Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI)" recently held in San Jose, California.

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