In the digital age, passwords are a complete necessity in order to keep others out of your private accounts. What would Facebook, Gmail or any other service be without a password that only allows you to access it while keeping others out? We’d have absolutely no privacy whatsoever as anyone and everyone could just access any account they want.

The tricky thing about passwords is you need to remember them, or at least use a service that remembers them for you. But then, ironically, you’d need to remember a password that would unlock that service so you could access other passwords. Don’t worry – our heads hurt, too. That’s why there are minds at Google who are looking into changing the way you access your private accounts that do away with the traditional password method.

Google VP of security Eric Grosse and engineer Mayank Upadhyay have come up with some ways for users to access their password-protected accounts:

  • A smartphone or smart-card ring that you wear that can authorize a new computer to give you access to certain sites or to the machine itself.
  • Plugging a customized USB drive into the computer while you are browsing that automatically logs you in to sites. When you take out the USB drive, the sites no longer give you access.

Both ideas seem like good ideas, with the USB drive approach being a concept that could be implemented easier than having your smartphone or a smart-card ring interact with your computer in order to unlock your accounts. Hopefully these ideas will turn into some kind of product or at least a method to give users access to their accounts as I even have some days where I can’t even access my account here at Ubergizmo.

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