FB pixel

Can you ID me now? Apple files for ear-canal biometrics patent

Can you ID me now? Apple files for ear-canal biometrics patent

Most people would no more wear someone else’s ear buds than they would invite a stranger’s finger up their nose.

But information being the hot commodity it is, Apple has filed for a patent on a biometric anti-eavesdropper app for its AirPods.

According to reporting by Patently Apple, the company realized that anyone could spot AirPods lying around, linked to an Apple device, and push the devices into their own ear canals to hear private information.

The patent document describes how a presumably unheard signal would be sent out of each headphone to bounce around the owner’s unique biometric ear-canal print. The signal return through the devices to originating bit of Apple hardware.

Assuming the illicit listener picks up the paired iPhone and wants to put some distance between themselves and the rightful owner, the AirPods could also analyze their gait to confirm they are mixing with the wrong earwax.

In both cases, of course, algorithms would compare the biometric signal for authenticity.

It seems Apple has a growing portfolio of biometric AirPod ideas. Last August, Apple published a paper hinting at the integration of biometric health sensors in headphones used while participating in sports.

The company is far from the only ear-canal innovator, either.

University of Buffalo scientists in 2019 began work on biometrics based on ear canal geometry. Their work reportedly scored 95 percent in accuracy.

Article Topics

 |   |   |   |   |   | 

Latest Biometrics News


Privado ID to tackle global demand for decentralized digital identity software on its own

Privado ID, previously known as Polygon ID, has officially separated from Polygon Labs to address the increasing global need for…


Implementing passwordless in device-restricted environments

By Rohan Pinto, CTO for 1Kosmos The increasing reliance on mobile devices for implementing secure, passwordless authentication in workplace settings…


Mastercard commits to passkeys for payment, full tokenization in EU by 2030

As the EU gallops into the digital wallet era, Mastercard is going full-token, as it announces a plan to achieve…


NIST adds flexibility, digital format to security requirements for federal contractors

The U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology has updated its guidance for how businesses working with the federal government…


Clear deal paves way for patient ID verification for Epic customers

Clear has made a major inroad into the healthcare sector, with a deal that sets it up for integration of…


Coinbase announces smart wallets for easier transition to chain

Coinbase is riding the wallet wave, with the launch of its next generation of smart wallets. A blog post from…


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Most Read This Week

Featured Company

Biometrics Insight, Opinion

Digital ID In-Depth

Biometrics White Papers

Biometrics Events