Three Alternatives To Your Bad Password

Three Alternatives To Your Bad Password

yellow lock blue door password
Simply having a long password isn't enough to protect your online information. (Image credit: Mark Fischer)
yellow lock blue door password
Simply having a long password isn't enough to protect your online information. (Image credit: Mark Fischer)

Face it: You have a bad password.

It isn’t your fault. With dozens of sites asking for dozens of different logins, it’s impossible for you to remember them all.

And even with password generating software, and apps that keep track of longer and more complicated passwords, hackers determined to get your data can get past those roadblocks with relative ease.

So the question becomes this: what is the next generation of password protection? The answer might be a little more personal than you think. The password of the future is already you.

What is biometrics?
Measurements used to identify the human body are known as biometrics. They can range from a fingerprint, to your height, to the way you walk down the street. Every person is different, and nearly every metric is unique only to you. This makes the body perfect for password generation, and makes passwords incredibly hard to duplicate.

Fingerprint scanning
Fingerprint scanners used to be the domain of corporate laptops and government institutions. Put your finger on a fingerprint reader and instantly unlock your business computer. But the tech is now small enough to stick pretty much anywhere, including on your phone.

That’s why new devices like Samsung’s Galaxy S5 and Apple’s iPhone now have fingerprint scanning tech built in to the device itself, making it easy to unlock your phone simply by touching it.

Apple is taking it one step further, letting you purchase apps and use its mobile payment service Apple Pay without entering any passwords at all: just use your finger to prove it’s you.

Heartbeat reading
Your body is full of unique identifying information (there’s only one you), with fingerprints being the most ubiquitous biometric password.

But biometrics company Bionym and its Nymi bracelet uses something more personal and secure than a fingerprint. It uses the cardiac rhythm of your heart to generate a password, eliminating the need to remember passwords completely. The wearable is still unavailable, but you can pre-order one from the company’s site.

Iris scanning
From spy movies to The Avengers, eyeballs are the go-to security measure for people with too much money on their hands and something to protect.

But the high-tech barrier isn’t just for the wealthy. You can grab security company EyeLock’s consumer-friendly iris scanner, Myris, and use it to create complex passwords based on a scan of your eyeball.