In today’s digital world, we rely heavily on passwords to protect our digital assets. Everything from email, to our social media accounts, to our banking accounts, everything is protected with a password. However, they are getting easier to crack and data breaches are everywhere. Perhaps it is time to say goodbye to the passwords. Here are the reasons why, and a few quality alternatives:
People Are Using Too Simple Passwords
Here’s a wild guess: Out of all the people reading this article, there will be at least a couple that use one of these passwords:
The point is – people can’t be trusted with passwords. Today, we have too many different sites and services we’re using, each requiring a password. Human beings are slaves to conformity, so they resort to weak, easy to remember passwords. If they’re easy to remember, they’re easy to crack, also. To make matters even worse, people often use one or two passwords for all the different services they’re using. That might not be a problem with things like Instagram or a cooking forum, but when your Instagram account has the same password as your banking, or PayPal account, that’s where the real trouble begins. Security researchers keep reminding us that we need to use complicated, random passwords – and a different one for every service. Knowing we’ll never listen to them, another solution is necessary.
They Are Frequently Cracked And Sold Online
Taking a look back at the past few years, there have been a couple of high-profile data breaches which really shook the world. Play Station Network, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Ashley Madison, OPM (the federal Office of Personnel Management), Experian, LastPass, those are just some of the sites and services which got breached in the past few years and have had their data – the data of their users – stolen. The data usually includes login credentials, payment information and sometimes even home addresses. This is another important reason why passwords should be eliminated. Large shopping events, like China’s Single’s Day, Black Friday or stylewe offering discount for women’s clothing, is a great opportunity for hackers to get their hands on your data.
There Are Better Solutions:
But we keep pretty much our entire digital lives under passwords! How can we possibly eliminate them, what would we do without passwords? I’m glad you asked, because security researchers all over the world have been working hard, trying to find better alternatives. So far, the most common one is called two-factor authentication, and it forces people to use something else besides the password. So, for example – entering a password triggers a phone call or an SMS message which the owner receives. That way, not only do you need to know the password, but you also need to have the owner’s smartphone on you, and that’s highly unlikely. Other alternatives include fingerprint scanners, retina scanners, facial recognition software and behavioral analytics.
Another cool and fairly common feature nowadays is the fingerprint scanner. It has already found its way into flagship smartphones, and it’s just a matter of time before it’s everywhere.
A bit more advanced, retina scanners are still far from mainstream, but are in use in more advanced and secure set-ups. Just like the fingerprint, a retina is unique to every person on the planet, which is why it is a good choice to replace the password.
Facial recognition is another advanced technology, that is already available on some smartphones and laptop computers. It scans for key features of the face, in order to recognize if the right person is trying to access the data.
The most advanced new technology in the security world is called behavioral analytics. It learns from the owner – looking at how he / she types, holds the mouse, clicks links and manages data. It then uses that data to determine if the real owner is accessing data or if it is an imposter.