biometrics password security

Securing, and Losing, Biometrics

The Weekly Cypher is specially curated to keep you up-to-date on the latest in cybersecurity, biometrics, and related news and innovations. This week’s topics are:

Washington State Passes Bill to Prevent Sale of Biometric Data | GeekWire

State Representative Jeff Morris of Washington recently introduced a bill that would prevent the sale of biometric data with the consent of the subject. This is an important piece of legislation for protecting user privacy and the security of biometric data. The language of the bill was intentionally left broad, in order to accommodate for future innovations in biometric technology. It was approved 81-17 before being passed to the governor’s desk to be law. [Read More]

Fingerprint Sensor Deactivated with Latest Android Update | 9to5Google

Some of Google’s own smartphones, such as the Pixel and Nexus lines, had their fingerprint sensors deactivated accidently when updating to Android 7.1.2. Users found that the fingerprint sensor simply stopped working after their devices installed the update, and entering safe mode or factory resetting their devices failed to solve the problem. In fact, some users reported that the option to unlock their device using a fingerprint vanished from settings altogether. [Read More]

Homeland Security Needs to Start Explaining Biometrics to the Public | NextGov

The Department of Homeland Security has been pushing biometrics as part of its agenda for border control for a while now. Now, in order to head off any PR blunders at the pass, the agency is seeking to bring in communications experts to help educate the public on biometrics, best uses, and how it will be using the data it collects in a secure manner. These efforts will focus on the agency’s Automated Biometric Identification System and Homeland Advanced Recognition Technology, the plan for the replacement for that system. [Read More]

New NIST Guidelines Say We’re Doing Password Security Wrong | VentureBeat

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recently released a draft of its new guidelines for password management, showing that everything we’re doing now is wrong. Among its latest suggestions, NIST points out that periodic password changes and imposed complexity rules do little to secure passwords. However, and important new consideration is the mandatory validation of new passwords against a list of commonly used weak ones. [Read More]

Can Behavioral Biometrics Prevent Identity Theft? | CSO

One of the most important innovations in biometric authentication today is behavioral biometrics. The ability to identify the user based on their actions, not just a static fingerprint or face image. Identity and access management (IAM) solutions are helping to streamline how we tackle identifying and authenticating users, but as we embrace biometrics and similar technology, it also puts users at a greater risk of identity theft. Now, some security pundits believe that those behavioral biometrics will curb this risk and boost security and privacy. [Read More]

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