July 29th, 2004, 02:16 PM
Biometrics to keep handbags safe
This is very ingenious use of existing technology. I wonder if they will apply it to wallets as well? I have to admit I would have never thought of combing something like this but why not? What other areas, other than computers and/or physical entry into a room/office/building or face recognition for airports, customs, etc., would biometrics be possible? I suppose it could be applied to cars and briefcases (for some reason I keep thinking it has already been applied to high end cars).
Biometrics to keep handbags safe
By Julie Clothier for CNN
Wednesday, July 28, 2004 Posted: 11:12 AM EDT (1512 GMT)
A tiny fingerprint-scanner opens the handbag only when it gets a match.
LONDON, England (CNN) -- It might sound like something straight out of a sci-fi movie but pickpockets should beware of a new invention that may put them out of business.
Design graduate Louise Wilson, frustrated after having her own handbag pick pocketed, has used biometrics technology to give handbags the type of security you would expect to surround the Crown Jewels.
The 23-year-old is currently in talks with manufacturers about producing a line of handbags that feature the security device. It could be on shop shelves within 18 months.
Ms Wilson's anti-theft handbag works through a rechargeable battery-powered biometric reader device, which stores fingerprint details of the bag's "registered owner."
The device, which fits inside the lining of a handbag, won't unlock the bag until a fingerprint that it recognizes is touched over a discreet 5cm scanner, using technology similar to that on door security entry systems. Once a match has been made, a sensor flashes green and the bag opens.
Ms Wilson, who graduated from London's Brunel University in industrial design earlier this year, said women often carried "their whole lives" in their handbag and losing all or some of the contents could be devastating.
"I had heard about biometric technology and wanted to apply it to something used in everyday life," she says.
"Being pick pocketed or having your handbag stolen is such a frustrating thing. It's so easy for opportunists to help themselves, especially in noisy, crowded public situations like shopping in a busy street or using public transport."
A recent survey revealed that more than two million British holidaymakers have had their handbag or wallet stolen while traveling abroad. Most of the thefts happened in a public place. Spain was the worst country for crime, followed by France and the Netherlands, according to the survey of 1,004 adults.
Paul Turnock, design director at Brunel University's department of design, said Ms Wilson's design had the potential to become the next must-have fashion accessory and could significantly reduce this type of crime.
The British Government wants biometric information to be included in all new passports issued from 2006, and driving licenses soon after.
Biometrics involves the use of an automated system to verify the identity of someone through physiological or behavioral characteristics, including fingerprint readers, iris scanners and facial recognition devices.
July 29th, 2004, 02:57 PM
thanks a pretty good idea, but wont stop the scum slashing the bag with a knife or just grabbing the bag from the person, I suppose if a slash proof mesh is used that could help to prevent it.
it will probably wont stop the dedicated thief, but will deter would be's. Its cool that the technology is small enough to do this, means theres endless possiblitys, such as on suitcases and maybe even things like couriered letters, it could kinda be like the electronic wax seal..
never thought it be that interested in handbags!
July 29th, 2004, 03:01 PM
Biometric technology will indeed add a extra level of security to those things and places you mentioned but there is most likely one or more flaws with it. as a example all someone needs to do is make a copy of a authorized finger print from items that are picked up everyday without thinking such as drink glasses books etc. or they could find other ways to get the desired item(s) door computer etc open with out using the finger print.
July 29th, 2004, 03:08 PM
This does seem like a pretty good idea, but I think if you carry a wallet you may be out of luck in this department. Think about it. When a guy is pick pocketed the whole wallet is lifted. Still a good idea althouh it seems that these new handbags may cost a pretty penny also .
July 29th, 2004, 03:13 PM
The finger print "copy" mechanism can be fixed. The biometric finger print readers I use take a resistance reading of the "bodies" conductive oils. It's not accurate but definitely will tell if the finger is: cut off and used outside the owner or a copy imprinted on tape or something. Even cheap readers can do that. They can be fooled in more sophsisticated ways but hey it's a purse. The deal is; now the lady is carrying a 300 dollar purse which is a better target. She might not get pick pocket, but the purse might get snatched. I can tell you first hand, it takes a while to get used to pushing your finger on the thing just right to get a positive ID, and what if the purse gets rained on and you need your keys? I think it's a cool idea, just bringing up ideas.
West of House
You are standing in an open field west of a white house, with a boarded front door.
There is a small mailbox here.
July 29th, 2004, 03:15 PM
MsM they're working on that as well. A new invention out there, which might become available to the public as early as January of 2005, is called a Chameleon Card. Its priced at $179 and you can preorder now from their website and get 50% off if you pay in full. Here's some more information on it:
. I wonder if they will apply it to wallets as well?
Compatible with any magnetic strip, bar code or smart card
Works with all existing point-of-sale (card reader) technologies
Built-in fingerprint identification prevents fraud and identity theft
Easy to use, with simple touch-screen for card selection
One Chameleon Card can replace all credit cards, ATM cards, customer loyalty cards, transit cards and more
Account information at your fingertips, all the time
The Pocket Vault Advantage for Consumers
Pocket Vault is the first device of its kind to be made available to consumers. The unique features of the Pocket Vault provide the ultimate consumer value:
* One-Card Convenience
End wallet overflow. Pocket Vault consolidates your credit cards, ATM cards, membership cards, ID cards and department store cards onto one compact, secure device. Keep mass transit cards, family photos and other wallet items on your Pocket Vault for even more convenience.
* Guaranteed Security
The ultimate protection against fraud. Pocket Vault's fingerprint recognition technology means that only one person can access your credit cards: You. And, your fingerprint information never leaves the Pocket Vault making sure your identity is secure and controlled by you.
* Instant Savings
Stop clipping and start saving. Just imagine... coupons, rebates and money saving offers delivered straight to your electronic wallet. And don't worry about expiration dates – Pocket Vault will track them automatically.
* Easy Accounting
Make informed purchasing decisions. Pocket Vault provides access to your latest card balances, interest rates and other account data, so you never go over your limit. Keep your cash flowing in the right direction by transferring your Pocket Vault information directly to your financial management software.
* Convenient Replacement
No need to wait for a new card. Pocket Vault provides a secure backup for your important data and immediate replacement of your wallet contents, if your device is ever lost or stolen.
How It Works
Pocket Vault uses a unique, proprietary combination of technologies to provide a convenient, secure way to use and store all of your traditional wallet items. Here is how it works:
Each Pocket Vault System will include a Chameleon Card, the biometric Pocket Vault device, a rechargable battery, tools to connect Pocket Vault to your computer, and powerful software that will allow you to setup and organize the contents of your Pocket Vault.
Setting Up Pocket Vault
When you first receive your Pocket Vault, you must set yourself up as the owner. Sophisticated software will record the unique characteristics of two of your fingerprints and store them locally on the Pocket Vault. During the setup process, you will also be required to provide identifying information, similar to information requested by credit card companies to verify your identity. This may include name, social security number, birthday and mother's maiden name
After you have initialized your Pocket Vault, you can load your credit cards onto it. Credit and debit cards can only be loaded onto your Pocket Vault while it is docked to a PC or Mac and the legitimate owner of the Pocket Vault has established a secure Internet session. Once you have connected to the Internet, load your cards onto the Pocket Vault by dipping them one-by-one into the Pocket Vault card slot.
The card information is then verified with the original issuers to ensure that all the cards the you are attempting to load are active, in good standing and owned by you. If the card information passes the verification test, the card info is then remotely loaded onto the Pocket Vault.
Using Pocket Vault
Once you have finished loading all of your cards and other wallet items, Pocket Vault is ready to go. When you need to use Pocket Vault, use the touch screen to select the item you wish to use from those you have loaded. Verify your identity by pressing your finger to the Pocket Vault's fingerprint reader. Pocket Vault will then release the Chameleon Card, imprinted with the information of the card you selected.
The Chameleon Card will operate with any point-of-service terminal, card swipe-machine or cash register that works by reading a magnetic strip. Simply swipe it through like an ordinary card. When you have completed your transaction, the Chameleon Card will be cleared of your information automatically. Replace it in the Pocket Vault until the next transaction.
You must reload your Chameleon Card by replacing it in your Pocket Vault after each transaction. For your further protection, if you load a card and fail to execute a transaction, the Chameleon Card will automatically clear after a few minutes have passed
I think i'll preorder mine right now
July 29th, 2004, 05:53 PM
knowin your a girl, or 'woman' msmittens, do ya have a handbag? would you use it? seems like you bein bore the technical type you'd mod it and overclock it with some neon lights.
July 29th, 2004, 05:56 PM
yeah...put neons on it....make it easy to spot during night time...sheesh LOL
Nah but that Pocket Vault looks nice...LOL...i'm so close to preordering it...but I don't like paying for stuff and wait 6 months to get it....maybe I'll have my GF pay for it as a christmas gift you get %50 off if you preorder and pay in full when they start collecting balances.
July 29th, 2004, 05:56 PM
Heh.. I don't use a handbag. It's a pain. I'd rather use a book bag or Camelbak. But if I did, I'd put a wireless on it along with a cam so I can show people where I am (and turning it off during appropriate times). This was actually an idea I had for a robot (a project still to be completed).
July 29th, 2004, 10:08 PM
problem with the secure bag is it runs the risk of being more expensive than the contents....having thieves nicking it to sell on ebay, defeats the point really...and like other things i can see crims finding fast ways to defeat the locks and contents in the memory. One idea that springs to mind is freezing them so that the lock contracts, possibly leading to change in size (depending on material) and also this puts the semiconductor out of operation temp range so they loose the memory contents, this has been done on a make of car radio.