Heartbeat Wristband Replaces Traditional Passwords

Dennis Faas's picture

Security experts say you should never use the same password twice. But for many of us that means having to remember a dozen or more different sets of login data.

But what if your devices could identify you by your heartbeat?

That's the idea behind Nymi, a new wristband developed by Toronto, Canada-based firm Bionym. According to reports, the wristband replaces passwords by identifying the wearer through electrocardiogram (ECG) sensors.

In other words, a wearer's heartbeat is used to communicate authentication to a wide range of devices.

Unique Heartbeats Make For Foolproof Security

The concept is based on the fact that we all have unique heartbeat patterns. Simply put, the peaks and troughs of an individual's heart rate can be used to distinguish a person from other people.

Surprisingly, this is one of the most foolproof ways of accurately identifying a person. Experts say it's also extremely hard for people to 'spoof'.

Bionym says it will soon release research data clearly showing that its ECG system outperforms facial recognition technology. (Source: newscientist.com)

Affordable Device Helps Users Ditch Passwords

According to Bionym, setting up the Nymi is very easy. Registering a person's identity is as simple as touching a sensor on the wristband for two minutes, which is enough time for the Nymi to determine an individual's ECG signature.

The Nymi can then use Bluetooth technology to communicate with devices equipped with Bionym's software. The firm says this can allow a user to instantly gain access to all types of modern gadgets, from automobiles to iPods. (Source: techhive.com)

The best part: Bionym says the Nymi will only cost about $100. The device will be available for pre-order starting in early September, though it's not expected to ship to consumers until early 2014.

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