This appears to have a great deal of potential. However, there are questions unanswered here such as: can it learn from outgoing calls; or can it be used by the service providers and networks to block faked number calls; or can it be used to identify "private number" calls?
Right now it has only been shown to be capable of recognizing calls (outgoing or incoming with 100 percent success) from your most trusted callers--phones with which you have connected at least five times. It can't block faked caller ID, but it can identify "private number" calls, but again only if they have called you at least five times before.
An interesting concept - but the information provided doesn't explain how it could work - or demonstrate cases in which it would be useful. The phone system sends calls on available routes - which differ between calls as does the quality of the call. Furthermore, legitimate callers may use different telephone instruments to make calls (different extensions at home or different cubicles at a call center). Finally, legitimate calls from banks are rare and the staff changes by shift so the probability of repeat calls coming from the same individual on the same phone are low. It would therefore seem that false negatives on legitimate callers would be common. This sounds like an interesting technology - but perhaps the use case needs to be reconsidered.
Your are right--in many ways, this is just a solution looking for a problem. However, the innovation that should not be overlooked, is that users can perform these trusted authentications without having to depend on infrastructure. True, it can only identify whether the caller is using the same phone they've used in the past, nevertheless that is still better than what we have now!
What would be the incentive for a telephone manufacturer to add this to their product? Technology solutions to security problems are great, but the better solution is to educate people to never provide their password over the phone to someone that calls them. Customer service operations that are designed well will provide capabilities to their customer service agents that will allow them to help their clients without ever having access to their passwords.
I'm with you, regarding passwords which should never be given out over the phone. In fact, today even when a trusted caller does ask for positive identification, they usually just ask for "the last four digits" or some such, so as not to reveal the entire secret over an unsecured line. Unfortunately, in my experience some people will volunteer almost anything about themselves when presented with the chance to get something-for-nothing. Greed is a hard thing to quell with education, but I agree--we should try our best to do just that.
It's quite an interesting invention. And I do agree that looks more like a solution looking for a problem to solve. It identifies the origin then? that means if there are 5 different callers using the same far-end phone will these 5 different calls be identified as the same?
What I can think of in regards an application is the mother that wants to know the thruth about where her adolescent is calling from...
What I see is an invention that is able to verify the hardware that a call has come through, not the number. What it provides is "one sided assurance", meaning it can tell if a caller is not the "trusted caller", which in itself is quite valuable. At that point, callers not verified can be assumed to be frauds. What I am looking for is a system that will save the first caller ID number that arrives, not the second one that is sent by the calling party. My ultimate goal would be to send a disconnect signal when a second number is sent, so that I would not even get those calls.
The use of this new Pindrop technology that reveal fraud and voice phishing scams will make the calls from inbound call centers more secure, this program will revolutionize call security if it has 100 percent accuracy at identifying the caller as the programmers say. I would really want to try this, do they have a website where I can download their program?