Planet GOOG

Google Thinks the Solution to Weak Passwords Is to Put a Ring on It

The word of Beyonce shall become law.
Any excuse to use a pic of Queen Bey. (Photo: Shallow Nation)

Any excuse to use a pic of Queen Bey. (Photo: Shallow Nation)

If you think malware is the biggest threat to Internet security, perhaps you should think back to the last time you actually used a good, strong password. Two Google researchers recently submitted a paper to the IEEE Security & Privacy Magazine that argues that weak passwords are actually a bigger threat to online security than any of that malware embedded in those crappy porn sites you frequent.

Google’s proposed solution to the Great Password Scare of 2012-2013? Literally put a ring on it.

Wired reports that Google thinks the next iteration of the password could be a simple ring with a smartcard embedded into it that automatically logs a user into Google when slid into a USB reader. (Hear that? That’s the sound of thousands of fashion-forward wannabe cofounders launching jewelry startups based on this concept.)

“We’d like your smartphone or smartcard-embedded finger ring to authorize a new computer via a tap on the computer, even in situations in which your phone might be without cellular connectivity,” wrote Google’s VP of security Eric Grosse and engineer Mayank Upadhyay in the paper.

Of course, this does solve the “I can’t remember my password problem,” but it presents a new one altogether: Where the f*ck did I put my password ring??? I swear I just saw it!

Follow Jessica Roy on Twitter or via RSS. jroy@observer.com