The advent of commercial smartwatches provides an intriguing new platform for mobile biometrics. Like their smartphone counterparts, these mobile devices can perform gait-based biometric identification because they too contain an accelerometer and a gyroscope. However, smartwatches have several advantages over smartphones for biometric identification because users almost always wear their watch in the same location and orientation. This location (i.e. the wrist) tends to provide more information about a user’s movements than the most common location for smartphones (pockets or handbags). In this paper we show the feasibility of using smartwatches for gait-based biometrics by demonstrating the high levels of accuracy that can result from smartwatch-based identification and authentication models. Applications of smartwatch-based biometrics range from a new authentication challenge for use in a multifactor authentication system to automatic personalization by identifying the user of a shared device.
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