It looks like the days of the password are numbered. Microsoft has announced Windows Hello, a new biometric authentication system launching with Windows 10 in the (Northern hemisphere) fall. It means you’ll be able to unlock your computer with a fingerprint or a face, just as you can on today’s flagship smartphones.
With the software support Microsoft is placing in the next version of Windows, manufacturers can start adding the necessary scanners and lenses on the hardware side – and as Windows 10 is aiming to bring the same OS experience to smartphones, tablets, laptops, desktops and consoles, it’s a significant step forward for biometric security.
“We want your devices to recognize you, to understand what you’re saying … we want the experience to go wherever you do and we want you to feel a great sense of trust as you go,” writes Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore in a blog post announcing the news.
Microsoft is promising the system will be tightly secured too. Special infrared technology is going to be required in compatible cameras, for example, to distinguish between the real you and a photo of you. There are plans to roll Hello out everywhere Windows goes – government, defense, health – so security is going to be a primary concern.
This probably is the beginning of the demise for the password method of authentication that has served us and frustrated us for 3 decades. These strings of characters can no longer cope with the rigors of today’s technology. They’re easy to crack for hackers and get more difficult to remember as they get longer and more complex in order to defend against hacking attempts.
So, say “HELLO”!