A South Korean company that makes a biometric access control platform exposed fingerprint, facial recognition data and personal information after leaving an Elasticsearch database open, security researchers say. They found 23GB of data belonging to organizations that use Suprema's BioStar 2 system.
The Indian government is putting pressure on WhatsApp to develop a mechanism to trace the origins of fake messages that threaten the nation's security. Will WhatsApp take action? And what do security experts say about the feasibility?
Biometrics may be in fashion, but it's in part because users are ready, willing and able to use it to prove their identity, thanks to Apple, Samsung, Google and other players providing trustable hardware for verifying people's fingerprints and faces, says IBM Security's Neil Warburton.
License plate and traveler photos collected at the U.S. border have been compromised after a federal government subcontractor was hacked. While Customs and Border Protection officials claim the image data hasn't been seen online, security experts say it's already available for download via a darknet site.
The quality of authentication provided by behavioral biometrics is improving, says James Stickland, CEO of Veridium. Nevertheless, he says, "we haven't reached a maturity level where it is used as an explicit form of authentication, but it's certainly now deemed as an implicit form of authentication."
Driven by Marriott's Starwood mega-breach, California lawmakers are pushing legislation that would expand the state's pioneering data breach notification requirements to include breaches of biometric data and all types of government identification numbers, including passports.
With the Cosmos bank attack still fresh in memory, some security experts are urging the Reserve Bank of India to take immediate steps to upgrade the security capabilities of banks. For example, they want banks to do away with user-based one-time passwords delivered via text messages.
As more companies move away from passwords toward behavioral biometrics, they face new challenges, says Rajiv Dholakia, vice president, products at Nok Nok Labs. "There are no standards as such in this area on how the information is collected, how it's stored and how it's processed," he says.
The National Payment Corporation of India, the umbrella organization for all retail payments systems, has asked banks to discontinue Aadhaar-based payments through Unified Payments Interface and Immediate Payment System channels.
The issue of access management and vulnerable software applications has come back to haunt the Unique Identification Authority of India which manages the Aadhaar database containing biometrics and personal information of over 1 billion Indians.
The new India Post Payments Bank will take banking to the doorstep by using India's mammoth network of post offices. Postmen will perform digital transactions on their phones. That's raising concern among security leaders, who recommend adopting defense-in-depth security.