Chinese Internet company Tencent launched its smart bracelet product named Qkey with a feature that grants the user payment authentication powers.
Apart from usual functions such as time display and exercise statistics recording, Tencent's Qkey provides a bank "U shield", electronic card package, and smart home device services. It is reportedly the first smart band with payment authentication function in China.
According to Shen Zixi, deputy general manager of Tencent's mobile security product unit, Qkey has five major application scenarios: password-free login of apps and websites to prevent personal information leaks; convenient payment and offline payments for QuickPass; payment authentication; smart card package to integrate various cards such as access cards, traffic cards, and employee cards; and Internet of Things ID to access smart home devices with ease and security.
At the same time, Tencent announced a security safeguard project. Shen revealed that eight fintech and cybersecurity enterprises had joined this project, including Watchdata, Feitian, Tendyron, China Banknote Printing and Minting, Taiwanese fingerprint recognition manufacturer Egis Technology, and Chinese chip manufacturer Fudan Microelectronics.
In the smart home sector, manufacturers like Haier have also reached deals with Tencent. Relying on Tencent's security abilities, Qkey will provide smart home users with secure logins to prevent password theft by hackers.
But with all the focus on security, users may still be wary of believing that the technicians behind the device truly appreciate cybersecurity concerns. Less than two months ago, Tencent confirmed vulnerabilities in its own QQ Browser to the researchers at Citizen Lab, an interdisciplinary laboratory based at Canada's Munk School of Global Affairs in the University of Toronto. Citizen Lab says they alerted Tencent on February 05, 2016, but by March 24 only some of the issues had been addresses or fixed.