Researchers at Hong Kong Baptist University have developed a lip reading password system they hope can be used to verify identity in such areas as customs clearance and electronic payments. While the technology is similar to other types of biometric recognition systems, such as fingerprint reading, it adds an extra layer of protection by allowing users to modify their passwords – in the form of lip syncing a phrase – in the event of a security breach.
The system enables users to complete authentication within seconds by uttering a short phrase of their choice – regardless of length and language. “You can use English, Cantonese or Putonghua ... you can even mimic a bird chirping,” explained computer science professor Cheung Yiu-ming, who led the research team of three. The user does not even have to read the phrase aloud as the lip sequence is analyzed visually, meaning people with speech disabilities can use it.
Like other biometrics technologies, the system has to go through a learning phase by requiring users to repeat the phrase 10 times to recognize the lip sequence. “This allows the system to build a threshold to either accept or reject the phrase. Each time the phrase is repeated, there are bound to be tiny differences in the sequence.” Cheung said everyone had a different lip sequence, which meant imposters would be screened out. “An imposter reading the same phrase would still be rejected by the system.”
The software is still at the prototype stage and there is no time frame for when it can be used commercially. Cheung admitted there were areas to work on, such as how reliability was affected by the brightness of the environment. “Overall the accuracy is around 90 percent.”
He also did not address whether the system can be fooled by showing a video recording of the lip reader over a screen, stressing the technology was not mutually exclusive with other authentication systems. He said he hoped it could be achieved within a year. Until then, pucker up and blow us a password. Read some more by CLICKING HERE