Can wearable computers compromise your privacy and security?
Wearable computers may bring a lot of benefits to the end users but just like any other internet-connected device, it may also bring a number of inevitable security and privacy issues. So, while it is true that wearable technologies are more convenient to use as compared to smartphones and tablets, are more discreet and fashionable, and can provide you with the information you need in real time, there are also a number of risks associated with the use of these devices. What are the possible dangers that lurk within the core of these wearable gadgets? Let us take a closer look.
The Hidden Dangers of Using Wearable Computers
It may invade a person's privacy. Wearable cameras that are designed to automatically take photos and create a detailed journal of the user's life can invade the privacy of those who are being photographed without their knowledge or permission. Smart glasses such as the Google Glass pose an ever bigger threat since such gadgets can record and transmit everything within the user's range of vision.
However, this is just the tip of the iceberg. A more serious privacy issue is waiting to happen when you pair these smart glasses with facial recognition software. If you are not yet aware of it, using smart eyewear with the NameTag app will allow the user to access any person’s personal information. It may even allow him (or her) to visit the target's social media (Facebook, Instagram or Twitter) profiles in real-time.
It can lead to serious security issues. While wearable police cameras can serve as a great way to provide reliable documentary evidence of police encounters, these devices give them the ability to edit the videos to suit their purpose. Worse, the technology may even be used for mass surveillance.
Even smart watches pose a great risk for enterprise security organizations. These wearable GPS-enabled devices have the ability to interface with Bluetooth enabled devices, thereby providing easy access to applications and data on smartphones and other devices.
It can lead to life-threatening situations. A lot of wearable medical devices such as glucose monitors, insulin pumps and pacemakers are wireless-enabled. This makes the wearer vulnerable to hacking attacks which may lead to serious and/or life-threatening situations. Previous studies show that an attacker can easily control an insulin pump to deliver a lethal dose of insulin and make modern pacemakers deliver a fatal shock to anyone wearing such devices.
Wearable computing devices may be the 'in' thing today but you should always remember that when used maliciously, these devices can pose an imminent privacy and security threat.