A startup is taking a novel approach to how wireless signals are used with a platform that provides real-time visualization of them, offering a new way to secure wireless networks and manage high-trafficked environments.
Cognitive System Corp.’s flagship platform works by detecting motion using wireless signals, which then identifies wireless devices connected to a user’s network, the company said in a press release. Any application built on the platform can notify users when a device, authorized or unauthorized, connects to their network or when an untrusted network is broadcasting nearby.
The platform relies on two key pieces of technology to function. They include Cognitive’s amera sensor and its underlying R10 chip. The former is the first product release from the company.
The R10 chip is a supercomputer chip featuring four wireless receivers and highly configurable dual multi-vector processors. Cognitive designed the chip to be affordable, replacing hardware that would typically cost tens of thousands of dollars, the company said.
“The R10 chip functions like the human eye, only it can see invisible wireless signals that people cannot,” Taj Manku, Cognitive’s co-founder, said in the release. “And the chip is much faster. It can respond to and report on signals in one-millionth of a second.”
Using the chip, Amera detects the presence of wireless signals from cell towers, WiFibase stations or rogue signals. It then alerts users of these signals of potential threats to their cybersecurity.
This technology will help businesses, organizations and consumers protect their data and devices from hackers who would take advantage of weak wireless security or set up dummy networks to snoop and steal private information, Manku said.
He said that while the technology behind amera is complex, it communicates information to users in an easy-to-understand way through a sensor unit and applications that they can access via smartphones or computers.
Cognitive’s platform can be used to protect a wide number of wireless-enabled spaces from unauthorized device use, such as homes and offices or places like cafes, restaurants, shops and airports where a range of users access networks, the company said.
Cognitive also envisions a range of new applications that can be built using the platform, including emergency-location services in places like ski resorts or theme parks where lost people sometimes need to be located, the company said.
It also could be used to develop applications that observe or analyze crowd movement or traffic flow, having potential to help facilitate better management of high-density areas like commercial shopping areas, airports and sports stadiums, according to Cognitive.
“The vision that drove amera and the R10 chip was to build a platform that empowers people by giving them more information about their wireless environment,” said Hugh Hind, Cognitive’s CEO, in the release. “Now we want to enable people with innovative visions to explore other beneficial uses of the platform. The opportunities are only as limited as our imaginations.”