Devices Use Biometrics to Prevent Hack Attacks (ARS Technica, Popular Science)


Dartmouth researchers are developing a wearable electronic device that uses a person’s unique physiological responses to protect his or her own medical devices, such as pacemakers, against being tampered with by malicious hackers, reports ARS Technica.

The proposed wearable instrument, worn like a watch, could identify the person who is wearing it and create a protective encryption system for the healthcare devices to which it is linked. ARS Technica points to a statement the authors made in their research explaining the capabilities of the new instrument. “Without any other action on the part of the users, the devices discover each other’s presence, recognize that they are on the same body, develop shared secrets from which to derive encryption keys, and establish reliable and secure communications.”

The Dartmouth researchers include Cory Cornelius, Jacob Sorber, and Ronald Peterson from the Computer Science Department; Joseph Skinner from the Thayer School of Engineering; Ryan Halter, an assistant professor of engineering at the Thayer School, and David Kotz, the Champion International Professor in the Computer Science Department and associate dean for the sciences.

Read the full story, published 8/7/12 by ARS Technica.

A similar article featuring the Dartmouth research was published by Popular Science.

Office of Communications