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PIPA Solutions looks to crowd-funding to bring biometric authentication for smartphones to life


Aiming to get a head start on the competition, PIPA Solutions, a London-based company has launched a new crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo, seeking $100,000 to fund the development and manufacturing of a new fingerprint scanner for smartphones.

A self-proclaimed leader in enterprise-level biometric security, PIPA Solutions’s PIPA Touch features a Bluetooth fingerprint scanner secured by protective covers. The sensor’s universal design can fit a wide variety of devices once compatible cases are manufactured, as the key to the PIPA Touch is that it requires no proprietary physical hardware connection – just Bluetooth, a standard connection. Designs available at launch to backers who pledge their support include cases for the iPhone 4/4S, iPhone 5 and Samsung Galaxy S3.

“We put a lot of work and brainpower into building a strong, fun and simple solution to securing our sensitive mobile data,” product engineer, Jonathon Lee said. “Our prototype is ready for the world. We’re turning to the masses to help us build an ecosystem around PIPA Touch, carrying us forward to producing the very first batch.”

The PIPA Touch Indiegogo project’s $100,000 funding goal will secure enough capital for an initial production run of about 1200 units. The company has announced that backers who support the project on Indiegogo will be the first to receive PIPA’s wireless biometric scanners and smartphone cases when they are produced and delivered by May 2013.

Once paired to a device, the PIPA Touch integrates wirelessly with the default locking system in the smartphone granting access via fingerprint scan. In practice, the combination of a user’s unique fingerprints and hardware to securely authenticate that biometric information effectively provides two-factor authentication for smartphones.

“Phone unlocking is just the beginning of what PIPA Touch does,” project founder Sher Khan said. “Scan and you’re in may be cool enough for some, but we’ve designed a system to cover all the bases.”

According to the company, you can add authorised users, create custom scan sequences for three-factor security, manage login and passwords in the same cloud and log into websites across all platforms using your fingerprints.
“By taking the wireless technology built into PIP Touch and integrating it with our cloud-hosted Password Bank, you’ll be able to log in to any secure site after entering your biometric scan sequence,” Software Engineer, Peter Lamb said.

Funding options for the PIPA Touch start at US$59 and go as high as $1,000.

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