Passwords are joining records, VHS tapes and floppy disks as things of the past. Passwords are no longer the safest method to keep an account and its’ information safe. Hackers are becoming smarter in decoding peoples’ passwords.

Two factor authentication has been the standard and now Biometrics is the new and improved method for securing information. For example, Apple back in 2013 enabled TouchID for the iPhone. With just a touch of a button, the iPhone scans the finger print and logins the user in. Microsoft is also utilizing biometric technology with a feature called Windows Hello. It allows the user to log in using their fingerprint, face, or iris. Instead of having to remember a password, Windows Hello allows your body to serve as the password. It improves security because someone’s body is a lot more difficult, if not impossible, to replicate and steal. However, if a fingerprint, for example, is replicated and used to steal a person's identity,  it will be virtually impossible to “reset”.

In attempt to avoid such a case of stolen identity, experts are suggesting to add behavioral cues with the biometric identifiers. Swiping, blinking, talking, and walking are all activities which are unique to each human being. Essentially it takes biometrics to a whole new level. If motivated enough, someone could find a way to replicate your fingerprint. In fact, Jan Krissler did so last year. He had pictures of a politician’s hand and was able to recreate her fingerprint. But it would be extremely more difficult for a hacker to steal the way that you swipe your finger – the angle, pressure and speed.

Talking is another biometric that has been more commonly used. Many people can mimic another person’s voice, but it is difficult to talk how they talk. The same is true for blinking and walking.

Back to two-factor authentication.  This has been a standard Google and your bank have been offering for years.  You’ve been using this method for a decade!  When’s the last time your bank asked you to change your ATM password?  Answer:  never!  Why?  Because two-factor authentication includes 1.] what you have and 2.] what you know.  You have your ATM card, you know your PIN number.

Bottomline recommendation:  Struggle through implementing biometrics as a more secure method than using P@s$w0rDs. Alternatively, figure out two-factor authentication using your smart phone.  They still present security risks and possibilities of being hacked, however, they offer a safer and easier experience for the user.


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Published with permission from TechAdvisory.org. Source.