In-Phone Activity Proves To Be A Better Safety Lock Than An Actual Password

In-Phone Activity Proves To Be A Better Safety Lock Than An Actual Password

New system can identify you by how you interact within your device's interface.

Ross Brooks
  • 8 april 2014

Researchers at Georgia Tech have developed a security system that keeps your phone safe, even if someone manages to get past your extremely complicated swipe pattern or password. The new features knows how you would normally interact with your phone, and if it detects any irregular patterns, will lock down your phone to keep it safe from unwelcome guests.

LatentGesture monitors user activity in the form of swipes, taps and check boxes, which are all used to create a custom profile, of which you can have up to five. The system then continuously monitors your device for any strange behaviours, which acts as the signal for a complete lockdown.

“The system learns a person’s ‘touch signature,’ then constantly compares it to how the current user is interacting with the device,” said College of Computing assistant professor Polo Chou.


The software would run in the background to provide a non-intrusive solution, and has so far been found to be 98 percent accurate on phones, and an equally impressive 97 percent effectiveness on tablets – all of which were Android. In addition to complete strangers, LatentGesture could also be used as a parental control to keep family members from making unwanted app purchases.

“Just like your fingerprint, everyone is unique when they use a touchscreen,” said Chau. “Some people slide the bar with one quick swipe. Others gradually move it across the screen. Everyone taps the screen with different pressures while checking boxes.”

Instead of changing your password every week, or coming up with ever more confusing swipe patterns, this new system could provide a simple way to keep all your phone’s valuable information away from prying eyes.

Georgia Tech

[h/t] EnGadget

Images: Pieter Ouwerkerk via Flickr

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