Microsoft envisions new approach to password protection
With consumers and business professionals constantly on the lookout for innovative password manager strategies, Microsoft has unveiled plans that hint at where the online security industry may be headed.
According to Microsoft research, the average American PC user has approximately 25 online accounts. However, an average of just six unique passwords are used as login credentials for this range of sites.
"One the one hand, that's completely understandable. Remembering a bunch of different password is difficult, especially for accounts that we don't use frequently," conceded Microsoft officials Steven Sinofsky in a recent company blog post. "On the other hand, password reuse is very useful to hackers."
Although password manager software can help users defend against the advances of cybercriminals in most cases, Microsoft has suggested that the current username and password paradigm may be flawed. Too many times, passwords are vulnerable to keylogging, cracking, guessing and phishing, according to Sinofsky.
To remedy this problem, Microsoft is now hard at work developing advanced identity protection features ahead of the Windows 8 rollout. According to Mashable, the new system is expected to involve the use of photos. From there, users set up a series of "gestures" that can be drawn on the screen to form a passcode.