A few months ago, Google announced that the company would be getting rid of the standard password. In it’s place, Google execs mentioned some type of individualized hardware. Now, Google is testing various rings that can be used in place of passwords to log into secure sites. Users could then wear the rings, and use the rings to log into any kind of mail or other account.
Using a ring to log into an account may sound very James Bond, but it’s a step that might be worth considering. After all, it’s too easy for hackers to snag alphanumeric passwords, and too hard for users to change passwords regularly. Could a ring be the answer to password problems?
The Rings Google Is Testing
The encrypted rings being tested by Google do not contain password information. Instead, these rings respond to mathematical questions posed by various websites. The correct ring can only answer the answers to these questions. Sound confusing? Well, in a way, it is. It’s not entirely clear how Google will use the rings. The rings could come in USB form, though a Google spokesperson has told press that some people are not really comfortable with USB passwords, so it’s unlikely that the company will go this route.
Google reps also told press that the idea behind the rings is a universal one. Google wants users to be able to wear a ring to a friend’s house, open up a Google browser, and let the ring do its thing. It may sound like Google is taking cues from Lord of the Rings, but a ring that holds all of your personal information could be a good thing – or a bad thing, depending on how you look at it.
When Google’s Rings Will Surface
Google is still working on the rings in question. For now, the company is remaining relatively silent about the status of the rings, the company that is manufacturing the rings, and other details. But, it certainly looks as though the future of the password will come in a different shape and form. Of course, the danger of a ring is that it can be lost or stolen, but Google chalks this up to being no more or less dangerous than a debit or credit card.
The difference here is that users will wear Google rings. Presumably, you will have to purchase a Google password ring, though this information is not clear at this time. How much the rings will sell for, what they will look like, and other details are also unclear. How do you feel about wearing a Google ring to log into your email, Google Docs, and other Google programs? Is it too easy for a hacker to simply snag a Google ring?
Seemingly, Google will have to make these rings look like any other ring. Otherwise, wearing a ring that states “Google” will be like wearing a moving target. Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see how users log into Google sites in the near future. Google is serious about privacy, that much is clear.