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'Invisible biometrics' detect user identity by how they use the device

Work & Lifestyle

BioCatch is behavioral profiling software that hopes to trip up cyber criminals by recognizing when their actions don’t match up with who they're claiming to be.

Online fraud and identity theft is fast becoming a headache for large companies and individual computer users alike. We’ve already seen alternatives to standard passwords in the form of LaunchKey, the platform that verifies logins via smartphones. Based on the premise that everyone has a unique way of using their devices, Israel-based BioCatch is behavioral profiling software that now hopes to trip up cybercriminals by recognizing when their online interactions don’t match up with the person they’re claiming to be. Hoping to provide an altogether more discrete way to protect digital assets, the BioCatch system monitors the minute details of users’ keystrokes, mouse clicks and touchscreen swipes to create a profile of their individual interaction methods. Once enough information is logged, the software can then be activated when the user is filling in online forms – such as credit card details – and can determine with accuracy whether or not the individual interacting is indeed the owner. Previous studies, such as one carried out by New York’s Pace University, have already shown that keystroke authentication is a possibility due to the vast differences in the way people type, making it much more difficult for criminals to impersonate others online. BioCatch is currently offering CyberCatch – designed for desktop computers – and MobiCatch – for mobile devices. The company has already raised USD 2.6 million to continue developing its solution and was recently named as a Gartner Cool Vendor 2013 for the security industry. If its system takes off, it could save vendors and device manufacturers the investment involved in installing hardware alternatives such as biometric readers and could prove more effective at fighting cybercrime. One to get involved in early? Spotted by: Lily Dixon



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