Businesses in the cyber world have always been targets for criminals. And with the pandemic and lots of companies switching to the online space, more cyber felons are having itchy fingers.
Enterprises can face various threats, with the most dangerous being fraud, phishing, and identity theft. Aside from losing significant amounts of money, they can cause harm for both businesses and their customers.
But there are ways to prevent it from happening, and while some businesses discard the importance of cybersecurity, others invest in such cybersecurity tools as traffic encryption software or voice biometric products.
We invited Miguel A. García, the CMO of Biometric Vox – a company that creates voice biometric solutions – to discuss their products, cyberthreats, and security measures.
Let’s go back to the very beginning. What was the journey like since your launch in 2015?
Biometric Vox arose in 2015 due to the need of one of the clients of our parent company. This client needed to record the working hours of its employees in the agricultural field, digitizing this process and avoiding identity theft. The agricultural field is a complicated environment, filled with noise caused by machinery, wind, etc. Through voice biometrics, we manage to avoid identity theft and record the working hours of employees while digitizing this process. From there, we continue to develop the business and our biometrics solutions. We participated in several accelerator contests, which we won, and which helped us to continue growing.
Can you introduce us to your voice biometric solutions? What technology do you use to authenticate one’s identity?
Today we have three main products: FirVox – advanced electronic signature, CheckVox – verification/identification of people, and TranscribeVox – speech to text transcription. In addition, we have other projects underway, such as the detection of heart conditions and covid through voice, which has had great results in laboratory tests and has been mentioned by Forbes magazine as one of the "100 most innovative projects in Spain in 2021”.
Our biometric engine is very flexible and adapts to many projects and use cases. It is important to note that our engine has anti-spoofing technology that prevents spoofing using speakers, synths, mirror copies, or players. In this sense, we participate in numerous national and international challenges, such as those of MIT or NIST, to be at the forefront of biometric technology.
In your opinion, which organizations could greatly benefit from implementing voice biometric solutions?
All of them. Digitization is one of the great challenges of the EU and of the 2030-Next Generation horizon, both for large and for small and medium-sized companies. Our solutions help digitize numerous processes, also providing the security of voice biometrics in digital identity and boosting the user experience.
Some of the main sectors are: banking, insurance, call centers, legal, AA.PP, HR, health, security, etc.
Have you noticed any new techniques used by threat actors to bypass various identity verification measures?
Scammers have always existed, and it is true that as digitization progresses, digital scams increase. It is a problem that will increase in the coming years and where companies must focus, with biometric solutions, among others, to avoid identity theft. The most common scams are phishing, but there is an increase in scams that try to impersonate us, such as "CEO fraud" or all those related to artificial intelligence. The best password is one that meets these three characteristics or at least two of them:
- Something you know, like a password or security question.
- Something you have, such as a mobile terminal.
- Something you are, like voice biometrics.
Besides strong authentication, what other cybersecurity measures would you consider crucial for organizations nowadays?
It is true that cybersecurity is essential for companies and will be even more so in the short, medium, and long-term future, as well as with projects such as the metaverse. Some recommendations to strengthen cybersecurity are:
- Audit the infrastructures and security solutions implemented. What do we have and in what state?
- Strengthen or implement additional measures to protect teleworking, which is here to stay.
- Better user identification, information encryption, and adequate access control through digital identity management projects.
- Adopt digital signature solutions to strengthen business processes.
- Employee training. Frequently review the level of awareness of the organization's professionals, the effectiveness of the measures, and carry out simulations of attacks to try checking how they react to them, for example.
As for personal use, what actions can average individuals take to secure their identity online?
Well, we believe that basically the same actions as for any company. In fact, scammers do not discriminate between companies and end users. Be informed about notions of cybersecurity and the most common scams, have an antivirus that makes things difficult for scammers, do not open, reply or forward content that we may suspect as malicious and try to carry out digital processes that offer us advanced security measures, like biometrics.
Where do you hope to see voice biometric solutions being used in the near future?
In our opinion, and all the studies and reports go in this direction, voice biometrics has a consolidated present and an exciting future. Robotics, smart cars, security, everyday digital processes, the metaverse – everything goes through the voice, since it is our natural way of communicating and the easiest way to secure our digital identity.
What do you think the future of authentication is going to be like? Do you think the use of biometrics is going to become commonplace?
Sure. Verifications and identifications through biometrics are already very common in daily processes. Every day we unlock and carry out operations with our terminals with our fingerprint or our face. Our clients are innovative companies, already performing thousands of signatures and verifications with their voice each day. It is not the future, it is already happening. In the coming months or years, we will see it as something totally normal, and it will be a differentiating aspect for those companies that offer it to their clients.
Would you like to share what’s next for Biometric Vox?
Our future lies in continuing to offer value to our clients' processes, being differentiating, and innovative with them, while also offering the best service. Our future is with them, accompanying them on the path to being the leaders in their sector.