Many people think biometrics is a great way to protect their data and devices. On the other hand, biometric technology may not provide the protection that modern society needs. As more businesses use biometrics, business owners should assess how secure biometrics are.
What Are Biometrics?
Biometric authentication uses unique body features to check your identity and let you access secure devices or data. For example, you might use your fingerprint to unlock your smartphone. Other examples include the following:
- Voice recognition
- Face recognition
- Eye scans
Since biometric data is unique to the individual, it should be secure. However, hackers always find new ways to access personal data for malicious purposes.
The Threats of Biometric Data
Adrianus Warmenhoven, one of NordVPN’s cybersecurity experts, warns that all recorded data is hackable. This warning extends to the biometrics devices that protect information and verify the user requesting access. But how great of a threat does biometric data collection pose? What should people who use their biometric identifiers to protect data look for?
The most common biometrics personal devices use are fingerprint data and voice and face recognition. Mobile phones, tablets, and laptops often use a biometric system to prevent outsiders from entering the system. However, most personal devices allow cyber criminals to mine data, such as:
- Usernames and passwords for various online accounts
- Access to financial accounts
- Contact information and other identifying data connected to other vulnerable parties
A personal device can be hacked by cybercriminals using a variety of applications that the owner has downloaded. Hackers can breach even trusted applications, placing more devices at risk.
Public or Business Devices
Many businesses employ digital infrastructures that may involve a recognition system. Some common examples include:
- Fingerprint readers on ATMs
- Keylogging for businesses using word processors
- Mouse movements to record productivity
- Voice, face, or eye recognition for accessing sensitive company data
Although most businesses prioritize cybersecurity now more than ever, hackers can still identify and exploit weak links. They can install fingerprint scanners on readers to duplicate the print pattern and use it in the future. They may also use voice recordings from spam phone calls to access voice-activated technology.
A cybercriminal may access a person’s cloud service and steal any biometric data stored there. Although biometrics can identify people, their duplication poses significant risks to those who rely on them exclusively.
Protecting Your Biometric Data
How do you keep your data safe as cyber threats become more advanced? The best way to secure your devices and digital information involves multi-factor authentication. Continue creating and using strong, unique passwords for every device and log-in. Periodically change these passwords.
Combine passwords, security questions, email or phone checks, and biometric scans to avoid unauthorized log-ins. This approach provides multiple layers of security to protect your devices and data.