Unique 'listening' technology tackles widespread fraud issues

Dec 15, 2011
Alaris demonstrates their unique listening technology for signature verification.

Alaris, a joint venture startup company between ASU and Rolls-Royce, aims to tackle health care insurance fraud that is estimated to cost U.S. taxpayers more than $200 billion each year. This partnership was formed to commercialize a Rolls-Royce developed signature verification technology called SignHear in several markets including health care, retail banking and child care security.

SignHear dynamic signature verification by Alaris is a biometric technology that verifies identity by analyzing the unique sound patterns created by an individual’s written signature. These sounds are captured and analyzed by a patented algorithm that generates an acoustic signature template unique to each user. The technology originally was developed by Rolls-Royce to run quality tests on jet engine blades. By firing a sound impulse into a blade and analyzing the resulting wave patterns, engineers were able to determine if any structural faults or anomalies were present.

With the high cost of fraud – estimated by the FBI to be as much as $220 billion annually – finding a preventative method of verification is an absolute necessity recognized throughout the industry. Currently, felonious claim submissions perpetrated by criminal rings and corrupt providers account for the majority of health care fraud costs. The industry currently relies on an ineffective post-service and reimbursement analysis of billing anomalies to identify potential claims fraud.

“SignHear technology affords health care with a game-changing strategy to fight fraud, shifting the industry’s current defensive approach to the offensive,” says Jeremy Kelstrom, CEO of Alaris.

Utilizing SignHear acoustic signature pads at the point of health care service prevents fraud before services are rendered and bills are paid. To date, other biometric methods of authentication have been rejected due to user invasiveness. As signature capture in health care is the traditional form of both clinical procedure and financial obligation acknowledgement, signature authentication technology is universally accepted by patients and providers.

Applications for this technology are widespread. For example, SignHear technology by Alaris is now an integral part of select Boys & Girls Clubs facilities in Scottsdale, Ariz. Parents of children attending after-school functions and summer camps can now sign their children out of care using SignHear. Parents and staff enjoy additional peace of mind as the SignHear system can identify precisely which children are present in the facility at any given time. Additionally, the system tracks the hours of volunteer staff, ensuring they receive credit and recognition for donated hours worked.

Alaris has been supported in its development by Arizona Technology Enterprises, the exclusive intellectual property management and technology transfer organization for Arizona State University, and the ASU Venture Catalyst.

Explore further: Our new anti-earthquake technology could protect cities from destruction

Related Stories

US charges 91 in wave of health fraud cases

Sep 08, 2011

US authorities have charged 91 people over some $295 million in alleged fraud schemes related to Medicare, the government-run health program for seniors, the Justice Department said.

New research advances voice security technology

Mar 08, 2010

Most people are familiar with security technology that scans a person's handprint or eye for identification purposes. Now, thanks in part to research from North Carolina State University, we are closer to practical technology ...

Recommended for you

Focused energy of lasers breaks microscopic adhesion

Jul 02, 2015

Small objects tend to cling to everything. It's why parents dread hosting parties that involve confetti. It's why glitter is fun for crafts—until it finds its way onto everything else you touch.

Insect decoys could protect ash trees

Jul 02, 2015

Emerald ash borers have no trouble reproducing themselves as they have now spread through half the United States, but duplicating effective emerald ash borer decoys is not quite as easy. Now, engineers have ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.