Security – Tech Insight

Hosted at Potato the focus of the talk was Security and Future Interfaces.

The speakers Adam Alton and Stu Cox from Potato spoke about their experiences of working with Google and creating secure digital products.

Firstly Adam and Stu set the scene by talking about Hacking, and how this as designers and developers we may not know how user will use the products we have designed and built. Using our products for something its not intended for. Wether this is White hat hacking or black hat hacking it’s important to understand where users may take your product.

As people within the industry it’s everyone’s responsibility to stop black hat hacking within our products with a moral obligation to keeps people data safe and to help build trust in our clients brands. With security starting at the ideas phase. Making sure that we cover what would happen if the product we built worked and then someone came along and used the service in a different way. E.g. Strava unknowingly showed the running routes that all american military bases. Not only that it can have a huge impact on the brands we work with, with an example being TalkTalk where 101,000 customs details were leaked. With the net result after fines and the loss in brand trust being a loss of £60m to TalkTalk. It was also found that out of the 101,000 customers that had their details leaked only 16,000 had their financial details hacked. Showing how a relatively small number of people can can their details stolen but the loss to the company can be massive.

Khalil Dimachkie came next from Smilepass talking about invisible interfaces. Talked out the technology their company are looking at with face recognition, saying he prefers this a security device over thumb prints saying thumb prints aren’t as succinct as people think they are. With the future being a combination of both face recognition as well as voice print biometrics. Saying how the industry is getting to the point where it can voice print one voice out of multiple voices in a room. Saying how Biometrics are helping users moving people away from something the user has to know and can forget to something you are, which requires less action from the user and eventually can be completely unobtrusive following the trend of how interfaces are gently falling away, with initially buttons, lights, switches moving to now where users have a blank glass slab to interact with. The next next step is to remove the glass slab.

Talking about users hacking face recognition he spoke how it will needs to detect scars, glasses, beard and aging and still recognising it is the same person. With the Intek camera he spoke how they stop hacking from masks or makeup as it can detect the blood that runs under the skin.

The biggest areas where he feels these types of interfaces will have an effect are within:

Finance – Interface will take time as it will be difficult to implement with the legacy systems in use.

Healthcare – Being able to checkin within the GP, reducing waiting times.

Transportation – Logistics companies. People moving through public transport, saving costs on staff and gates.

The final speaker from Liliana Kastilo from SYNK, came to talk about open source and how this can introduce risk within your code. She has found that with using open source most code used within projects today can be someone else’s. SYNK allows developers to review their code to see where vulnerabilities can be found within their pages.