Passwords to be replaced with icons and patterns

Passwords to be replaced with icons and patterns

For as long as we can remember, online accounts, apps and programmes are accessed with a string of letters and digits to form username and passwords. As technology becomes more advanced, these so-called private accounts are becoming more susceptible to hacking.

In a bid to make online platforms more secure, we are seeing a rise in password-free login solutions including fingerprint and selfie technology. The latest innovation of this type comes from researchers at The University of Plymouth with their GOTPass system.

The development will require users to draw a pattern or symbol, similar to the unlock function for some mobile phones, followed by selecting two images or icons from a grid of 16. The grid will have a number of similar themed decoys but selecting the correct pair will generate a one off numerical code which needs to be typed out before it gives the user access.


replace passwords with icons

Image Credit: TechRadar

As well as helping to protect personal data from hackers, this method will be cost effective for providers to implement, removing the need for costly and complex hardware systems. Plus it will save users a lot of time and effort because they won’t need to scramble around trying to remember difficult passwords.

Initial tests show that the technology is easy for users to remember, but a problem lies in the fact that security analysts managed to hack the system 23 times out of a total of 690.

The GOTPass is clearly still in research stages, but it could certainly be useful in the future. The rise in the need for a selfie, fingerprint, text, or handshake to gain access to personal accounts definitely confirm the fact that passwords are slowly but surely becoming extinct.