Google ‘On-Body Dectection’ is Probably the Smartest Security App Out There
I scarcely come across anyone who can imagine life without a smartphone. The teeny-weeny box that we carry around has become something more than a utility – our phones carry more secrets than what we share with friends and family.
Things such as photographs, messages, and account information can easily be extracted from one’s phone with a few tap-tap-tap. Now imagine this small box carrying a large chunk of your life in someone’s hand – yes, we all dread the moment and not everyone bothers with setting a pattern lock.
Thence Google is reportedly planning to enhance the smartphone security with new smart lock dubbed ‘On-Body Detection’. The said lock uses a phone’s accelero-meter to determine whether it should automatically lock the phone once the owner has placed it down or pocketed it.
After picking it off a surface, the device must be manually unlocked before using it. Furthermore, owners can pre-set some areas as ‘non-lock zones’ – when placed on ‘non-lock zones’, the phone will not lock itself.
We have also come across some reports stating that if an owner unlocks his or her device and hands it to someone else, the device remains unlocked as long as the other person continues to hold it:
If you unlock your device and hand it to someone else, your device also stays unlocked as long as the other person continues to hold or carry it.
Combined with Google Device Protection or GDP, On-Body Detection should ensure maximum security for a smartphone device. GDP is a new security tool featured with Android Lollipop 5.1 (pre-load on Google Nexus 6 and Google Nexus 9) which keeps a stolen or lost device in ‘locked’ state unless a user signs-in using his or her Google account.
Even if someone performs a factory reset using the phone’s Bootloader Menu, the security will keep intact – a feature which is somewhat similar to Apple’s Activation Lock.
Google has yet to officially announce or confirm the On-Body Detection and currently there is no concrete release window that we are aware of. Make sure to check back as we will update as soon as we hear anything!
Arslan is one of Techfrag's regular news writers. When not digging out news stories, he is found buried nose deep in fantasy novels, wasted listening to dubstep, or raging against Xbox Live kids. Need I say more?