android m fingerprintIt used to be that the pattern unlock feature of Android was one of the more popular ways of unlocking a mobile device, but then fingerprint scanners were introduced which proved to be an even more secure and efficient way of protecting a mobile device. However Google wants to turn those methods on their heads with Project Abacus.

The idea behind Project Abacus is to take mobile security beyond passwords and fingerprints. Instead it will be based on something more unique – your personal habits. Basically your mobile device will be constantly monitoring the things you do the whole time to determine if you are who you say you are.

This will be based on the words you type, the kind of apps that you typically load, and it will also incorporate things like voice and facial technology, all of which will go towards generating a trust score. What this means is that even if a thief were to get their hands on your phone and because of different usage patterns (for starters), the phone will know that it’s not you using it.

Considering that in the past it has been proven that fingerprint scanners can be beaten by taking the finger of the user and pressing it against the scanner, this endeavor by Google sounds pretty promising. The demonstration that Google put on at I/O proved that the system thus far is able to distinguish between two users.

Project Abacus was developed by Google’s ATAP arm and was also in collaboration with 33 universities that tested 40TB of data across 28 states. It’s an intriguing idea although the constant monitoring sounds like a battery drain, but whether or not Google chooses to implement it in the future remains to be seen.

Filed in Cellphones..

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