Watch What You Wear: Smartwatches and Sluggish Security

Watch What You Wear: Smartwatches and Sluggish Security

Joseph Ricci, Ibrahim Baggili, Frank Breitinger
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-5484-4.ch067
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There is no doubt that the form factor of devices continues to shrink as evidenced by smartphones and most recently smartwatches. The adoption rate of small computing devices is staggering and needs stronger attention from the cybersecurity and digital forensics communities. In this chapter, we dissect smartwatches. We first present a historical roadmap of smartwatches. We then explore the smartwatch marketplace and outline existing smartwatch hardware, operating systems and software. Next we elaborate on the uses of smartwatches and then discuss the security and forensic implications of smartwatches by reviewing the relevant literature. Lastly, we outline future research directions in smartwatch security and forensics.
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The Road To Smartwatches (History)

The advancement in digital technology typically targets two challenges:

  • 1.

    Performance: Everything should be faster and better;

  • 2.

    Form Factor: We continuously aim for building more compact devices.

The size of the digital computer has continued to shrink from the reprogrammable digital Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer (ENIAC) that occupied an entire room, to the desktop, to the mobile smartphone which can fit in one's pocket. Paralleled with the decrease in size was the escalation in processing power and storage – instead of a few kilobytes of memory and a single core with a few hertz, we now have multi-cores and terabytes of memory.

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