The Apple Watch will use a skin contact sensor to deter thieves

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At their event yesterday, Apple took the wraps off several new products such as the Apple Watch and Apple Pay. The company revealed that Apple Watch users would be able to participate in Apple Pay, although we’re sure some of you guys are wondering how this will work since the Apple Watch does not sport a Touch ID sensor for authentication. Well according to both Rene Ritchie of iMore and a report from Cult of Mac, it seems that skin contact will be what is used to authenticate payments made through Apple Pay.

One of the big questions about the Apple Watch is how Apple will prevent thieves from ripping it off your wrist and using it to clear your bank account. Because the Apple Watch is connected to Apple Pay — making purchases as easy as a quick swipe — what’s to stop miscreants from abusing it? The answer wasn’t addressed at Tuesday’s unveiling, but an Apple staffer at the hands-on demo told me how the watch will be protected against fraud. Thanks to sensors on the Apple Watch’s back, the device can tell when it’s being worn and when it has been taken off. When you first put the watch on, you must enter a code. When the watch is removed from your wrist, the watch locks itself and can’t be used for payments unless the code is entered again. Pretty simple right? Unless the thief chops your arm off, of course, but that’s a different story.

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