Using Typing Patterns to Identify The Typist – Disclosure May Be Required

This week’s Westchester County Business Journal reports that Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems is utilizing technological methods to detect cheating when students take online exams.   As the article by Crystal Kang duly notes, “the findings have broader implications in a world rife with hackers and cybercrime.”  The program which Pace uses analyzes keystrokes, typing patterns and linguistic style to determine the identity of the test-taker.  For example, if the student generally hits the backspace button after every other word, and the test-taker hits it only one or two times a sentence, the program will show that someone might be using the test-taker’s identity to take the test.   There are multiple issues involved in logging a user’s keystrokes.  Of primary importance to commercial sites which might utilize this technology, is the issue of privacy, and the possible requirement of disclosure to the typist – whether a customer, or an employer.  A properly drafted privacy policy must include disclosure that this technology is...

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