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Virginia Tech Cybersecurity Breakthrough Keeps Sensitive Data Confined in Physical Space, Engineering Team Says

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Jules White

Virginia Tech professor Jules White

Credit: Courtesy of Virginia Tech

Virginia Tech researchers have developed new security features that can remotely place smartphones under lockdown.

The software enables smartphones to access sensitive data when the user is in a particular room, but wipes the data completely from the phone once the user leaves the room. The software also provides central control of phone features for preventing a smartphone's camera or email from working.

Virginia Tech professor Jules White says the system is unique in that it places physical boundaries around information in cyberspace. "There are commercial products that do limited versions of these things, but nothing that allows for automating wiping and complete control of settings and apps on smart phones and tablets," White says.

The researchers say the technology would enable intelligence authorities to not worry about lost or stolen smartphones or tablet computers, and doctors and nurses would not be able to walk out of an examination room with patient information or take photos of patients and put them on the Internet. The technology also would enable parents to block their children from sexting.

From Virginia Tech News
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