ProctorFree - This Week in Cheating: Cicret Wearable technology

A new startup out of France has a cool new device to view your phone…and everyone is freaking out!

Cicret, (pronounced secret…I guess since this other app is named Secret they got a little clever with the spelling. And even that Secret had to get a URL with .ly!) is an app connected to a bracelet, technically a wearable technology, that will project your smartphone on your forearm. You can control and move through the app by touching your skin as you would the screen of the device. This thing is pretty cool; full functionality of your device on your skin. Check out their video here:

Did you just put it on your wish list and send it to Santa? You might want to hold off for a bit. The Cicret team is seeking 300,000 Euros to develop the product, and asking for 700,000 Euros to go to production. It is a very interesting funding and marketing strategy to go right to the consumer in a crowd-funding effort. Famous ones like Coin have had major set-backs, leading to disappoint many customers (including the author of this post) or be overrun by major players (Hello, Apple Pay). However, that’s a post for another blog for another day.

We here in The Land of Academic Integrity saw Cicret and immediately said, in unison, “OMG! What are we going to do?! Now students can cheat on exams!” I assume this is the same pronouncement administrators and faculty made when cellular phones started text messaging and students could text under table tops.  The obvious fear here is that students will use Cicret to cheat on online exams. But truth-be-told, this really won’t effect how ProctorFree proctors students. Sorry to disappoint you, every student who just donated to the crowdfunding site.

The Land of Academic Integrity

If this is your first time here, welcome! Allow me to explain a little bit about how we proctor exams. Through a webcam, microphone, and internet connection we can verify a student’s identity, monitor their test session , detect cheating, and report that cheating all without any human intervention. Our algorithmic-based technology churns through video in real-time flagging a test taker’s nefarious behavior and displays it to the reviewer in a easy-to-use super-well-designed interface. (Click me for a demo)

I need to describe this next part somewhat delicately, because if I disclose a trade secret I’ll be in trouble, but we’ve been able to detect off camera phone and tablet usage since the inception of ProctorFree. Using the Cicret entails a very repetitive series of behaviors like the arm twisting, eyeball movement, and something super secret that I can’t disclose here but will set off our software like a 4-alarm fire. Sorry, kids. The point is, no need to fear, friends of academic integrity, ProctorFree has your back. The Cicret is detectable and therefore reportable. You will clearly see your test takers try to use it.  Then you can sit back and have yourself a good laugh tinged with the slightest bit of admiration for the creativity and ingenuity students will demonstrate instead of studying.

And also, good luck to Cicret! We are a start up and we love supporting other start ups. We hope you get all the Euros you can!

Until the next development in academic dishonesty, this has been “This Week in Cheating.”