Security specialists continue to seek new and innovative answers to tackle the growing problem of data breaches and compromised systems that use username/password authentication.  It’s hard to fight a war if you don’t know the weak spots in your defense and how the enemy keeps winning battles.  If the answer is more hardware and more complicated software solution, we should have had an impenetrable security system a long time ago.  The world is full of hardware and nothing seems to help.

Mind and imagesSince hardware solutions obviously fail to alleviate the problem (and are costly to build and deploy), the alternative is to look for software-based solutions. With the rise of our ability to collect and use data, it is tempting to believe that knowing more about the user will help develop new ways of running Turing tests for each transaction.  It’s not an association that is obvious, but DARPA is correct when saying that: “Biometrics are defined as the characteristics used to uniquely recognize humans based on one or more intrinsic physical or behavioral traits.” To think of biometrics only as referring to fingerprints or eye scans, is to limit the multi-factor options and raise the cost of single points of failure.  We must consider that biometrics is also your mind – in a way that transcends the simple use of text-based username/password methods.

The military also recognizes that the current methods are relying on “users being good at something they’re naturally bad at.”  The current reliance on user vigilance, trusting that hardware systems can correct has given us no confidence that today we safeguard accounts better than anytime before.  “The need to replace passwords in particular is pressing,” and DARPA is calling for “cognitive fingerprints” – accept the permanent limitations of users and seek to deploy authentication mechanisms that do not rely on building new hardware solutions.

However, a true “cognitive fingerprint,” as it relates to authentication, is not how you type an email or a Word document, or how you use the mouse.  In a world where you use your iPad, iPhone, Google Docs and other systems – interchangeably, you need “huge data” to monitor all of your activity and relay authentication verification to all of points of entry that you use for business and personal accounts.  Tricerion mutual-authentication solution is the ultimate “cognitive fingerprint” in the new biometric paradigm.  Your mind and your ability to recognize visual information is the simple answer to building a truly secure authentication environment that does not depend on the user’s level of vigilance or any hardware deployments.  Tricerion’s SafeLogin is a simple answer to any company that already has plans to build authentication layers with big data information, as well as anyone who cannot afford to hire a team of MIT scientists to safeguard account access points.