Turn Up the AC? There’s an App for That!

Face recognition technology that opens a garage door, enhancing connectivity in schools and an app that controls the temperature on an old window air conditioner are among the innovations shared at the June meeting of the Delaware Valley Chapter of the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA), hosted by Wilmington University’s College of Technology.

Online Computer and Network Security student Kelley Arthur traveled from her home in Georgia to the New Castle campus to present her final project in SEC 465 – Cybersecurity and the Internet of Things (IoT). Arthur used a Raspberry Pi and facial recognition software to open her garage door.

IoT devices like smart TVs and security cameras make life at home more convenient. But they also can bring security vulnerabilities. Arthur tested just how reliable her facial recognition technology is. While her husband’s face didn’t work, an image of Arthur’s face on her cellphone, her daughter’s face and an image of a celebrity lookalike all opened the door. Arthur suggested modifications that could improve system security and also received suggestions from cybersecurity professionals attending the gathering.

Student Eric Irizarry presented his use of an Arduino microcontroller, Bluetooth, an app he wrote for his iPhone and a couple of electrical relays to control the temperature on a vintage window air conditioner. Jesse Masone presented research he did as an IT professional in a school district in which vendors are adding Bluetooth connectivity to their WiFi routers and the resulting potential applications.

“All three were very well received by the audience and the ISSA looks forward to continuing to build on its relationship with WilmU and its students,” said Dr. Mark Hufe, director of Cybersecurity Education and chair of WilmU’s Computer and Network Security bachelor’s degree program.