Abstract: There is an epidemic of youth use of tobacco products. As a result, Congress increased the legal smoking age to 21 in the United States. Unfortunately increasing the smoking age does not prohibit youth from getting access to tobacco products. They can still use fake ID’s or have friends or family purchase them. A Smartphone-based technology has been developed by Glas Inc, that prohibits youth from using the product. The E-Cigarette is locked when purchased. The user is required to register the device to activate it. The technology is cloud based and uses artificial intelligence to conclude that the user is above the legal smoking age and also that they are alive. The technology used to age verify is not based on a single data point such as claimed age but is a combined collection of information about the user from the internet as well as facial recognition software designed to establish the age of the user. The technology periodically communicates with the E- Cigarette through the Smartphone to assure that the user is the registered user. The device shuts down if out of Bluetooth range of the Smartphone, prohibiting the device from being purchased by one person and given to another. Potential failure scenarios were developed to test the product functionality. Sixty subjects were provided with Smartphones loaded with non-branded age-gating software. In all scenarios tested, none of the 16-20 year-old individuals were able to validate that they were over the legal age of 21. This demonstrates that, under the conditions of this test, the age- gating functionality is effective in preventing under legal age activation and use of the product.

Ed Carmines, Lise Fraissinet, Azure Steele

Affiliations: Chemular, Inc, Hudson, MI, M/A/R/C Research, High Point, NC