Researchers show how invisible backdoors can be hidden in chips during manufacture

Adding backdoors at the chip level — Schneier on Security — “In this paper we propose an extremely stealthy approach for implementing hardware Trojans below the gate level… we insert our hardware Trojans by changing the dopant polarity of existing transistors. Since the modified circuit appears legitimate on all wiring layers (including all metal and polysilicon), our family of Trojans is resistant to most detection techniques.”





US regulators simplify licensing process for fintechs

State regulators take first step to standardize licensing practices for Fintech payments — Conference of State Bank Supervisors — “Seven states have agreed to a multi-state compact that standardizes key elements of the licensing process for money services businesses (MSB). The agreement: If one state reviews key elements of state licensing for a money transmitter — IT, cybersecurity, business plan, background check, and compliance with the federal Bank Secrecy Act — then other participating states agree to accept the findings… Other states are expected to join this compact.”



Consumers call for biometric logins to financial services apps

IBM Future of Identity study: Millennials poised to disrupt authentication landscape — IBM — “Security was vastly ranked as the top priority for banking, investing, and budgeting apps — for these categories on average 70% selected security as the top priority, with 16% selecting privacy, and 14% selecting convenience… 44% ranked fingerprint biometrics as one of the most secure methods of authentication; passwords and PINs were seen as less secure (27% and 12% respectively).”


Researchers demo continuous user authentication system for smartphones

Russian experts submit ‘impenetrable’ smartphone protection system — Phys.org — “The advantage of the new method by the specialists from MEPhI is continuous protection from outside interference without any additional action by the user… Each person has a unique and inimitable style of handling the phone, and the system is based on identifying these unique characteristics.”


Stripe: Bitcoin is now too slow and too expensive to be viable for payments

Ending Bitcoin support — Stripe — “Transaction confirmation times have risen substantially; this, in turn, has led to an increase in the failure rate of transactions denominated in fiat currencies. (By the time the transaction is confirmed, fluctuations in Bitcoin price mean that it’s for the “wrong” amount.) Furthermore, fees have risen a great deal. For a regular Bitcoin transaction, a fee of tens of US dollars is common, making Bitcoin transactions about as expensive as bank wires.”



JCB to trial biometric technology that uses visible light to read palm prints and vein patterns

JCB to test multipurpose biometric authentication for potential launch of authentication and payment scheme using visible light palm authentication — JCB — “JCB will be running a trial of multipurpose server-based visible light palm authentication in February at JCB headquarters in Tokyo, Japan… The trial will focus on testing technical aspects during the registration and payment flow: capturing customer palm print and vein patterns with a smartphone camera, storing the patterns on a server, performing authentication, and returning the results to the smartphone.”


Hasbro picks NXP chips for new NFC music mixing game

NXP powers NFC experience in Hasbro and Harmonix’s dynamic music-mixing game Dropmix — NXP — PARTNER NEWS — “This fast-paced, music-mixing game empowers players to create unique mixes with hit songs by playing NFC chip-enabled cards on a game board connected to a free mobile app… The board reads up to five Dropmix cards at a time, and the proprietary software in the app seamlessly combines the music within each card to create a unique mix.”





Carnival explains how its NFC and BLE devices will power next-generation cruise ship guest experiences

Cover: "From MagicBand to Ocean Medallion: Using interactive devices to unlock next-generation guest experiences"

Carnival Corporation’s Michael Jungen explains how the world’s largest leisure travel company will use its new NFC and BLE-enabled Ocean Medallions to provide guests with a wide range of personalized, next generation services on board its cruise ships in an in-depth paper which is now available to download from the NFC World Knowledge Centre. More


Researchers develop continuous biometric login for smartphones

NSF grant to develop one-handed smartphone authentication — Illinois State University — “The interactions, such as strokes, that users make with their thumbs when working with smartphones can be very unique,” said Lai, who is an assistant professor in the School of Information Technology. “We can use these interactions to identify different users. This is what we call thumb biometrics.”



Rambus to demo mobile payments, tokenization and HCE solutions at Money20/20 USA

Let’s talk about mobile payments @ Money20/20 — Rambus — PARTNER NEWS — “We will be at booth 833, showcasing a range of mobile payments products, including our Unified Payment Platform, as well as our Token Service Provider and Host Card Emulation (HCE) solutions… Interested in learning more? You can arrange a meeting with a member of the Rambus team at +31 10 885 10 10 or contact us via email.”



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