Smartwatches are the definition of science fiction becoming reality. They are becoming part of our daily lives more and more, and wearable computers are the latest the tech world offers us. They are designed to look like normal high end watches, and yet the entire world in contained within them.
But of course, as with every new technology there are risks and dangers involved.
HP recently did a study to find if there was an option out there that would allow total security. Turns out, there is no smartwatch at this time that satisfies the needs for even the most basic security.
The watches were reported to track heart rate, weight, location, and other private data, with no strong authorization on offer.
Do you really want your heart rate being tracked?
Sure, the implications for health are great. If you have a condition, you could let the watch track your vital stats, and if there is a problem alert the emergency services or your doctor right away. That is a good thing to have, but as with everything, there is a dark side to the moon. While you trust your doctor to have this data, do you trust a hacker to have it as well?
There is even a way that hackers could identify what you are typing while wearing a smartwatch – just by looking at the motion sensors that were being tracked by a homegrown app.
The hands move differently, as they type. And the motion sensors on most of these apps are so finely tuned, that the difference between typing a t and an f can be detected.
And, as we discovered in a previous post on this website, the way you type can be used as a biometric (much like a retina scan and a fingerprint).
What to take away from this is, I guess, be careful how intensively you use your smartwatch for sensitive data. If you just want to take your FitBit for a run, sure. But don’t sit down and type your password afterwards.