Tech Strategy Trends

Apr 22 2011   9:30PM GMT

What If Your PC Could Just Recognize You?

Tony Bradley Tony Bradley Profile: Tony Bradley

Forget hitting CTRL-ALT-DEL, or having to remember archaic username and password credentials to type in. This is 21st centruy Star Trek type stuff where you’re just on a first name basis with your PC.

Technologizer’s Jared Newman points out in this Techland post that leaked early builds of Windows 8 contain signs of the facial recognition technology that was hinted at in leaked memos from Microsoft last year (maybe Microsoft should do something about all of this leaking…unless it’s the kind of ‘leaking’ that is done intentionally on the sly to build anticipation without publicly announcing anything).

You have to admit, it would be pretty cool to have a PC that will turn a cold shoulder to unauthorized users, but will instantly light up and log in when you sit down. However, the technology is not without its potential downsides as well.

What happens if an attacker just holds up a roughly life-sized photo of your face in front of theirs when they sit down at your computer? What happens if you change your hair style, or get a black-eye, or there is some other alteration to your face and your PC doesn’t recognize you? Or, what happens when hackers figure out how to tap into the camera connected to your PC that is always on and constantly scanning the area so it recognizes when you sit down?

Still, put the facial recognition together with voice recognition, and a vocal response capability and you have a computer capable of interacting conversationally a’ la Star Trek…or HAL 9000.

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