The University of Toronto’s Prop-ID research team has developed a new mobile app designed to help users maintain control of their personal information as they make mobile transactions, according to Global Montreal.
The team’s “ID wallet” app functions in a similar fashion to Google Wallet, only instead of containing payment and loyalty cards, its stores only ID information. Here’s how it works:
When approaching, for example, an LCBO controlled liquor store, you are provided with the necessary ID criteria on your smart phone – in this case face match and age authentication. You then simply hit ‘OK’ on your phone, and your encrypted ID information is transmitted to the authenticating device, which in this instance would be the LCBO employee at the register.
The LCBO then decrypts the ID information using the key provided by the driver’s license authority in your province. If the credentials match, your transaction will go through.
Project leader Andrew Clement warns that laxer security measures could spell trouble for many future mobile wallet users, who will be handing over unnecessary personal information that could be kept on record.
“I’m concerned that as transactions move to smart phones, our ID transactions will look more like what we do on the Web—where a lot of personal information is transmitted—than the current practice for those situations, such as buying liquor or other transactions, where while we might show ID, we don’t leave the same kind of traces of our identity,” Clement told Global Montreal.
“Currently when you show ID, you flash a card, somebody looks at it and they sort of decide whether you’re right or not, but they don’t actually record anything,” added Clement. “But if you have a smart phone that does that kind of transaction, then all of the information potentially on your card is available.”
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