We joined Tiago to talk about his team’s award-winning paper about AR/ VR, and how this tech works throughout BT.

Tell us who you are and what you do

My name is Tiago Andrade and I’m a Research Specialist for BT Applied Research. My role involves looking at the current challenges for Cybersecurity and thinking one step ahead of innovative solutions.

My focus is on augmenting the power of Data Scientists by the use of Extended Reality (VR/AR) technologies.

Talk to us about the award you've just received

The award was for 'Best Presentation Award' for a paper submitted at the IEEE ISI Conference. Since it was an online video presentation, we went the extra mile to make it polished and engaging all the time.

"Discerning user activity in VR with accelerometer observations" is the title of the paper, written by Max Smith-Creasey, Jonathan Roscoe and I. We explore how malicious actors may be able to eavesdrop on a virtual reality session, by tracking the physical movements of a user, just by looking at data from a mobile phone or a smartwatch that has been compromised. In the end, we discuss the mechanisms for improving security around this challenge.

What sparked inspiration for the paper?

I've always been driven by VR technology and I believe it will be the tool of the future. It started when observing a user playing games in VR, we saw there was a potential of identifying user actions movements based on different sensors on wearables that the user was carrying with him. By collaboration and bringing together the VR, biometrics and side-channel attack knowledge, as researchers, we found the perfect challenge to exploit this characteristic and saw a chance to write a research paper around this idea.

How has BT supported you in your research?

I have had a great amount of support and recognition since starting with BT. BT always encouraged me to explore my ideas and to bring creative thinking to the table. My leadership team made sure I was getting the training and guidance needed to be able to continue my research.

How is BT using AR/ VR?

Innovating and creating better tools for the working environment is always in our minds. BT is using AR/VR to help Data Scientists, Team Operations and Field Workers to augment their knowledge and have a better understanding of all the possible threads and prevent/protect our network.

What's next for you and your team?

My goal is to keep pushing VR into new areas and combining it with different security challenges. There is a wide-open area to explorer in terms of immersive learning, data visualisation, remote collaboration and digital twins that can bring innovative tools into BT; and we plan to continue the paper research further with more publications.

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