About ProteqsIT, AffirmID, AffirmID Auth and the Inventor
The Story Behind ProteqsIT
Having discovered a potential fix to the intractable problem enabling identity theft to occur during the authentication process, the founder chose to continue his research under a business umbrella. Casting about for a suitable yet unique business name for a product or service that protects things the words “protects” and “it” were joined to form the name “ProteqsIT” and thus was born ProteqsIT LLC. This website is a natural progression of that decision as is its product AffirmID a natural realization of the research done under its banner. The ProteqsIT mission statement economically and eloquently says it all “Security First”.
The Story Behind AffirmID
Authentication “the process or action of verifying the identity of a user or process”. Actually, authentication today is the “process or action of verifying a credential”. Cyberattacks, ransomware or otherwise, exploit this subtle yet pervasive difference recognizing that by simply appropriating the credential they can become the person having all the rights and access the authentication allows. While on video surveillance security project in 2014 the concept of authentication a user by who or what they are could bring an end to these exploits of cyber-attackers. Armed with his hardware and software engineering background, prior AI products of his creation, and a single Whitepaper published by Northeastern University Rick set about the task of using a smartphone to recognize a person from their human traits. And so was born “AffirmID”, the manifestation of 5 years research and 5 US Patents. In the patents “Personal Identifier” is a set of methodologies that by use of AI and phone Sensors can learn and then recognize a person uniquely from all others. In keeping with the Northeastern whitepaper, an AI projection of 92% or better is considered an absolute match, and AffirmID regularly achieves that when a phone is held by its original user.
The Story Behind AffirmID Authenticator
What began as a simple “proof-of-concept” app in 2019 to show the power and flexibility of AffirmID morphed during the pandemic months of 2020 into a mature finished product in the summer of 2021. The product now known as the very capable cell phone authenticator app “AffirmID Auth”. Its core is that of AffirmID, the ability to learn and then recognize the original user’s identity using nothing more than their behavioral human traits and some clever real-time AI. In keeping with his inventive nature Rick went overboard on the authenticator part of the AffirmID Auth by including OTP passcode generation (2FA) on par with the likes of Google, Microsoft, DUI, RSA and others, FIDO2 and WebAuthn cryptographic authenticators like that of YubiKey but in the form of an app, and an adaptation of WebAuthn to the emerging password-less Push authentication arena. The AffirmID Auth “Security First” value proposition, only the original user can access the cell phone attenuators. Lacking access, bad actors have no opportunity to use the cell phone authenticators even should they have possession of the phone. AffirmID Auth is unique in a class all its own where athanors and authentication are concerned.
About the Inventor
Rick Hallock, the inventor of record, began his career as a fix it guy, in his teens as the kid who could fix cars for his teen friends and the slot car racers for the neighborhood kids. Fixing things as a career began in earnest when reporting on board nuclear submarine USS Robert E. Lee, SSBN 601 where his in rate responsibility was running, keeping, and fixing the most advanced and complex of shipboard systems imaginable. Following honorable discharge with dolphins and captains’ citation, he pursued his calling making a career of fixing things, typically large complex problem prone things. When commissioned to fix endpoint access security of a large video surveillance system product he recognized the fallacy of credentials-based authentication. He also found it impossible to correct these failings while keeping the credential as the core identity verifier. He set about to find an alternative solution achieving affirmation of identity without a dependency on credentials and their risks. In August of 2015 he filed the first of 5 related patents showing how to do so. He codified those disclosed methods creating what is now known as “AffirmID”. He went on to create the authentication product “AffirmID Auth”. Rick works from home where he enjoys the presence of family, reading, bicycling, and occasional cross country trip to an unseen national park.