Technology 3 min read

U.S. Military Software Can Unlock Your Smartphone Using Body Movements

According to reports, the U.S military has created a new form of military software that can predict and identify a user's gait and usage patterns.

This new military software could fundamentally change how we keep our smartphones safe. ¦ Shutterstock

This new military software could fundamentally change how we keep our smartphones safe. ¦ Shutterstock

According to the Washington Post, the United States military is developing a new technology that would take advantage of your smartphone’s in-built sensors. Alongside receiving other biofeedbacks, the new software is expected to record and recognize how you walk.

As exciting as this sounds, it also raises a question; why is the military developing a “gait recognition software”? The likely answer is simply for extra security.

The software can use your smartphone’s sensor to register typing patterns, grips, gaits, as well as other physical attributes. Using this recorded data, your phone can recognize you before unlocking.

If a user holds or unusually grabs a phone – maybe there’s a slight difference in the person’s gait – the phone would register these changes and lock. And, it’ll only unlock when everything is normal again. That means someone else can’t pick up your phone and access your personal information.

Read More: Security Report: Twitter Still Has Copies of Your Deleted DMs

If recent reports are anything to go by, this technology may come to your smartphone sooner than you think. The Washington Post reported that the Department of Defense could finish testing the system in two months. And, if all goes well, the whole country should have access to the technology within the next two years.

In a statement to the Post, Steven Wallace, a scientist at the Pentagon’s Defense Information Systems said: “Our focus from the start was something usable at the commercial level.”

As odd as it may sound for the military to develop a commercial tech, it wouldn’t be the first time. According to Wallace, projects such as the Internet and GPS started as military research. Eventually, the rest of the world gained access to it. According to Wallace:

“I’m not going to say that we’re going to create something that’s as broad and as grand as GPS or the Internet, but there’s a history of the department working on things and those things ending up in consumer devices,”

With that said, there’s always a privacy issue. After all, China developed a similar gait-based surveillance system to spy on users. As far as we know, this military software is different.

Rather than monitor its users, the military software is expected to provide extra security at a low cost to government-issued phones.

Read More: Russia Bans Smartphones to Prevent Military Location Tracking

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Sumbo Bello

Sumbo Bello is a creative writer who enjoys creating data-driven content for news sites. In his spare time, he plays basketball and listens to Coldplay.

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