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TrendBiometrics and cloud computing

Published 8 June 2010

More and more biometric-enabled identity cards are being issued by governments; taking these cards into the streets and other remote locations will increase the demand for mobile biometric devices; these mobile devices permit a country to take biometric-based critical services directly to citizens, rather than requiring citizens to come to the technology

In predicting the security forecast for 2010, there will be a noticeable increase in the utilization of biometrics and cloud computing environments, says Terry Hartmann, vice president of identity solutions at Unisys. Increasing the security of credit card information and mobile transactions will also be a major issue.

Neil Ferree writes in his blog that more countries are also issuing biometric-enabled identity cards. Taking these cards into the streets and other remote locations, will, in turn, increase the demand for mobile biometric devices. These mobile devices permit a country to take biometric-based critical services directly to citizens, rather than requiring citizens to come to the technology.

Taking it to the clouds

Organizations will begin to reduce the tendency to protect everything, instead prioritizing security controls based on whether the data presents low, moderate or high levels of risk. “Cloud computing can allow customers to make a number of cost savings as they run their operations,” Hartmann says. “2009 was the year of people becoming aware of cloud computing.”

 

In 2010 organizations will begin moving less sensitive public data into cloud environments. They will attain these cost savings and follow with migrating more sensitive data into the cloud, as new security models are tailored to address the increasing levels of data sensitivity.

Securing card and mobile transactions

Hartmann predicts there will be tougher standards and policies to combat credit card fraud in coming year. “At the moment, in the U.S., we are pretty lax in regards to how we handle credit cards.”

 

On the back of a credit card is supposed to be a handwritten signature of the owner–a biometric linking the owner to the card itself. “However, nobody actually checks that,” says Hartmann.

He predicts more implementation of EMV to ensure that both online and face-to-face transactions are performed by the actual owner of the credit card.

Hartmann states this system will be primarily pushed by consumer demand. “People travel to Europe and Asia-Pacific where these extra levels of security are already established, they are surprised that these types of controls are not already set into place in the United States.”

The demand for security platforms and anti-fraud applications need to be strengthened and updated regularly, to ensure the protection of mobile transactions. As more employees and consumers use smart phones to conduct business dealings online, organizations will look for new ways to protect its data beyond simple PINs and passwords.

“For a lot of people, your cell phone is a biometric–you’re uncomfortable if it’s not around. It’s a part of you. You’ll notice you’ve lost your cell phone before you’ve lost your credit card.”