Guest author: Brian Kane
Brian is a computer science nerd who loves to write about new programs that are compatible with Linux machines.
Internet behemoth, Google is putting plans in motion to change the way we access our personal pages online. Rather than memorize which email account uses your childhood address as the password, or which website requires you to type in the name of your favorite pet, Google wants you to access your Google accounts on your mobile device, tablet, laptop and desktop with the tap of a unique “finger ring,” says BGR.com’s Brad Reed. Thus marking the beginning of Google’s “password-killing” campaign.
Google is one of countless websites that have modified password security with a two-step verification process. This process may require you to enter one password online while the website texts you an additional OTP (one time password). RTTNews.com says the combination of these two steps should make hacking into an account impossible.
The need for this extra layer of security became apparent last year when numerous agencies and corporations, like LinkedIn and Verizon, reported security breaches in their system because of hacked accounts.
Hundreds if not thousands of incidents like these have underlined the need for increased online security. According to Wired.com, Google executives Grosse and Upadhyay have even announced that they feel passwords and cookies are no longer enough to keep user data safe.
Improving User Experience
Although the call to change how passwords work is based on security concerns; part of the movement is attributed to making account access more user-friendly. A magic ring or a one-stop authentication device lets consumers sign into their Google accounts by tapping their finger against their desktop or mobile device.
In a paper published by IEEE Security & Privacy Magazine, Google’s engineers have outlined how they anticipate this product to work. According to RTTNews.com Google is creating a Yubico cryptographic card that can slide into a USB port that will automatically log users into their protected Google accounts.
Will Passwords Become a Thing of the Past?
Google has already tweaked their Chrome Browser to ensure that it will work with such a device, but there is still more work to do before a one-stop authentication device will become the norm. Websites that are comfortable using the conventional password to protect user data may be the biggest hurdle during this process. Once these other websites realize the potential in killing passwords, they may hop on the anti-password bandwagon.
Although these changes have been designed to improve the user’s experience, they also underscore the transparency of online data. With so much data freely available, it is critical for users to consider their online reputation as well as their online safety. “People need to control their online search results,” states Reputation.com, an agency that helps improve the online reputation of its clients.
When asked whether or not change is imminent, Google’s response is hopeful. They acknowledge that others have tried and failed in similar endeavors, but they maintain that they are eager to test their idea and move forward.
photo credit: FindYourSearch