We have been relying on the trusty password for years, but as password cracking technologies improve, even longer and more complex passwords are being solved and sold on rainbow tables. So passwords are for the most part over. Two factor authentication is possibly a solution, but biometrics are becoming a big part of what is next in the field of user authentication. We have already seen fingerprint scanners on some laptops, and Windows 10 is supposedly shipping with iris scanning capabilities.
More secure user authentication strategies have being relying on a the triad of security: something you know (passwords), something you have (RSA key, USB dongle, or smartphone app), and something you are (biometrics such as fingerprint, facial recognition, palm print, iris or retinal scans). Researchers are now adding brain activity or brain waves to the mix. apparently, each persons brain waves respond differently to the same input, such as a short work or acronym. I am pretty sure we are not quite ready to plop electrodes onto our noggins in order to login to our computer or an banking web site, but the research indicates that brain wave activity can be used to identify a person to 94% accuracy.
Our current recommendation is to create a unique password of at least 12 characters, and use two factor authentication whenever available. We will be trying some of these other new technologies as they become available, and report on our experiences here.
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About the Author:I am a cybersecurity and IT instructor, cybersecurity analyst, pen-tester, trainer, and speaker. I am an owner of the WyzCo Group Inc. In addition to consulting on security products and services, I also conduct security audits, compliance audits, vulnerability assessments and penetration tests. I also teach Cybersecurity Awareness Training classes. I work as an information technology and cybersecurity instructor for several training and certification organizations. I have worked in corporate, military, government, and workforce development training environments I am a frequent speaker at professional conferences such as the Minnesota Bloggers Conference, Secure360 Security Conference in 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, the (ISC)2 World Congress 2016, and the ISSA International Conference 2017, and many local community organizations, including Chambers of Commerce, SCORE, and several school districts. I have been blogging on cybersecurity since 2006 at http://wyzguyscybersecurity.com