How much do you "Trust" Google?
The next step in phone and app security.
Forget geo-location. Forget cookies. Forget your internet history. Forget fingerprint ID or biometric scanning. The next step in security was quietly announced at the Google I/O developers conference yesterday and it's either incredibly cool or incredibly creepy - we're not sure which yet!
It's all about you!
Called 'Trust API', the system will allow your Android device to track everything that you do and then create a user profile based on your behaviour - the way you write, how you use your phone, when you use your phone, where you use your phone, what order you usually use your apps in. So far, so cool.
Sorry, you're not you. You're walking funny.
Google will then use this information to create a Trust Score, which will then allow you to unlock the phone and use specific apps. The idea is that different apps will use a varying level of 'Trust' - your bank app will want to be absolutely positive that you are you, whereas Instagram might only want to be 'pretty sure' that it's you posting those selfies!
That's a lot of information.
This is where we get to the creepy bit. Google says that the idea behind it is simple - our phones have so many sensors, tracking and behaviour monitors in them, that we should be using the data to make our lives easier. OK, but where is all of that data going to be stored and how secure is it? Who can access it and why?
Is it about advertising?
Perhaps. Google is search engine, but it is also an advertising platform - that's where it makes its money. Targeted ads make more money. Ads targeted directly at users by looking at their behaviour? Well, look at this way.... if you twist your ankle stepping off the kerb, Google will recognise it by the way you walk - and direct you to the nearest pharmacy to buy some branded painkillers, then to the nearest convenience store to buy some branded water, contact your freezer to make sure you have some frozen peas, and finally call your Google self-driving car to come and pick you up.
Just because that's the way you walk.......