Updated at 1:14 p.m. PST Friday, December 5 with comment from Lenovo.
Editor's note: CNET editor and Crave contributor Dong Ngo is spending the month of December in his homeland of Vietnam and plans to file occasional dispatches chronicling his impressions of how technology has permeated the culture there. Click here for more of Dong's stories from abroad.
HANOI, Vietnam--Regardless of what some people seem to think, we Asians do not all look the same. But according to the current face recognition algorithm used in laptops, our faces are all about as flat as a piece of paper.
That's according to BKIS, the Vietnamese Internetwork Security Center that makes the antivirus software I mentioned in a blog post Monday. At a press conference here Tuesday, the company demonstrated vulnerabilities in laptops' face recognition-based authentication mechanisms that let anyone log in to a computer easily with a "special" photo of the legit owner, even at the highest authentication level.
Using your face as the password to log in to a computer--an alternative to the fingerprint method or the traditional username and password--marks a new trend found in laptops from Lenovo, Asus, and Toshiba. As far as I know, only these three vendors currently offer this technology in their laptops. These computers come with a built-in Webcam that's used to capture and analyze faces.
I've been impressed by this new way to log in and have found it to be so much more convenient than the fingerprint reader of my Dell XPS 1330. The finger scanner is a pain when my finger is wet or dirty. Unfortunately, on Tuesday I discovered that this new and exciting technology may not be such an effective security measure.
Taking a peek at the big Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales, there are plenty of big-screen TVs and cameras, but not quite as many laptops. That's surprising, because based on the extreme interest readers expressed for Walmart's $298 Celeron-powered Compaq laptop earlier in November, we suspect a lot of people will be looking for laptop bargains during the holiday weekend.
Industry watchers say many of the deals this year aren't particularly exciting, so you may have to dig a little deeper to find a bargain. Here are a few of the Black Friday laptop deals we spotted … Read more
This is for all you Crave addicts out there who read Crave and only Crave (you know who you are). You see, CNET is actually more than quirky gadgets and gear. We review whole products!
In particular, we've reviewed quite a few LCD monitors lately. For a low-price 22-incher that boasts great movies and games performance and includes both HDMI and DVI connections, check out the Gateway HD2201.
Also, we … Read more
This article was corrected at 2 p.m. PT to reflect the proper spelling of Cannady's name.
An SMS message can be a powerful thing when it comes to laptop security.
There are a considerable number of security measures available to companies to protect their valuable data on employee hard drives. Self-encrypting hard drives and security software are touted as the latest solutions, but the PC has to be turned off for the data to be secured by encryption. If a notebook is stolen while in hibernation mode, or even while the operating system is fully loaded, there's … Read more
It's difficult for external portable hard drives to stand out against the competition since they're judged mostly on cost per gigabyte, connectivity, and aesthetics. Lenovo jumps into the game by making a case for onboard security.
Its ThinkPad "Vault" USB Portable Secure Hard Drive is protected by the "128-bit advanced encryption security standard" and is actually built into the hardware, similar to the Maxtor Black Armor drive. The Lenovo ThinkPad hard drive also has a built-in USB 2.0, as well as a physical keypad built into the face of the chassis, allowing up … Read more
The reviewers seemed to be genuinely pleased with the whole experience:
Even with the snags we can get from the Eee Top, it … Read more