Google Android to lock screen of stolen smart phones with AI

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Google is gearing up to introduce a groundbreaking feature aimed at enhancing smartphone security through the power of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in its upcoming Android 15 operating system.

The tech giant, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc., is poised to unveil the ‘Theft Detection Lock’ safety feature, designed to thwart mobile device theft and fraud. Leveraging AI technology, this feature enables smart devices to detect instances where a phone is forcefully taken from its user and promptly locks the screen, preventing unauthorized access by thieves.

This functionality relies on monitoring motion and disruptions in motion patterns following a theft. To enable this feature, smartphones must be equipped with built-in sensors like accelerometers capable of detecting sudden movements indicative of theft, such as snatching the device and making a swift getaway on a bike or in a car.

Once these suspicious motions are identified, the device automatically activates a lock to thwart further access by unauthorized individuals.

“During the beta testing phase, this feature demonstrated promising results with participants in cities like Sao Paulo, London, Brazil, and France,” stated Dave Burke, Vice President of Engineering at Google. “Following positive feedback, we made the decision to include this feature in our upcoming Android release.”

This innovation is particularly significant for regions like Brazil and London, where smartphone theft occurs at an alarming rate, with incidents reported every 5 to 6 minutes, respectively.

Interestingly, this announcement coincides with Google’s initiative launched a year ago, wherein tech industry leaders were urged to take action against the rising trend of mobile phone thefts, which had seen a significant uptick over the preceding months.

In addition to the Theft Detection Lock, another noteworthy feature aimed at bolstering mobile security is the introduction of the Private Space Tool. This tool allows users to securely share data-intensive yet sensitive mobile applications, such as banking or social media applications, enhancing privacy and safeguarding personal information.

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Naveen Goud is a writer at Cybersecurity Insiders covering topics such as Mergers & Acquisitions, Startups, Cyber Attacks, Cloud Security and Mobile Security

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