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Scientists are working on a way of using the internal orientation sensors in smartphones to defend against efforts to trick voice recognition systems.
As the use of smartphones, wearables and voice-based assistants is on the rise, so is the risk that criminals will try to use those systems to their advantage by impersonating people's voices.
Devices - Speaker - Verification - Systems - Research
To combat this, devices have automatic speaker verification systems – but research has shown that, while they can pick up human voice impersonation, they are worse at detecting when a person's voice is replayed or distorted, for instance from a recording or in a machine-based impersonation.
This often involves playing the spoof voice attacks through a loudspeaker, and because loudspeakers typically produce a magnetic field, researchers from the University at Buffalo in New York have developed a prototype for software that would turn a smartphone's internal magnetometer into an alert system.
Magnetometer - Phone - Compass - Fields - Researchers
The magnetometer, which is used for the phone's compass, detects magnetic fields, and the researchers argue that this could be used to identify when someone is trying to use a loudspeaker to fool the device's speech recognition systems.
In order to detect the magnetic field, the prototype app – published in a paper [PDF] presented last week at the annual IEEE International Conference on Distributed Computing Systems – requires the source of the sound to be close to the phone, and so uses the phone's mapping algorithm to determine how close the speaker is to the phone's microphone.
Magnetometer - Motion - Trajectory - Data - Sound
"By cross-checking the magnetometer and motion trajectory data, we are able to verify if the sound...
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