Is That Really You? Face And Speaker Authentication Startup KeyLemon Raises $1.5M Series A

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Swiss startup KeyLemon, which is a spin-off of the Idiap Research Institute and provides face and speaker recognition technology for the purpose of user authentication, has raised a $1.5 million Series A round.

Its first external funding, the backing comes from Debiopharm Investment, the investment arm of Swiss-based global biopharmaceutical group, Debiopharm Group, and Swisscom Ventures, the corporate venture arm of telecom operator Swisscom.

Piggybacking the proliferation of PCs, tablets and smartphones that feature both a microphone and camera, KeyLemon’s face and speaker recognition technology aims to solve the problem of controlling and guaranteeing that the person with the correct identity is allowed to access and use data.

As example, KeyLemon cites the example of MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses), which face the problem of ensuring that the right students access the right classes, and that they attend the classes.

The company’s solution solves this problem by identifying the user via what they look like and the sound of their voice as an alternative or complementary method of user authentication to the tried and (sometimes) trusted username/password.

In terms of the end customer, KeyLemon’s technology is sold both as a kit to OEMs, chip vendors and ISP providers, for the use in handheld devices and embedded applications, as well as a cloud solution for online authentication aimed at e-learning platforms, universities, and companies providing online identity access management solutions/digital signage.

It also offers a freemium version of its product direct to consumers who want to get in on the face and speaker authentication action, in the form of a Mac and Windows app.