Thursday, February 6, 2014

Passwords can be tricky on mobile devices

30% of organisations to use biometric security on mobile devices by 2016 (
Almost a third of businesses plan to use biometric authentication for mobile devices as part of their bring your own device (BYOD) programmes by 2016, according to research firm Gartner.

The analyst firm explained that BYOD programmes have caused potential security problems for IT directors within enterprises and data that is protected by complex passwords and security measures on employees’ PCs is not guarded as well on their mobile devices. As a result, Gartner expects that 30 per cent of organisations will implement biometric authentication on employees’ mobile devices, up from five per cent today.
I came across an interesting problem the other day. I had to change an important password to access certain critical work functions. Being a conscientious type, I use good password hygeine: mixed case, numbers and punctuation with the help of a random password generator. So far so good.

When I generate the password, I don't really care what it is or notice the characters. I copy and paste it into the web page asking for it. So far, so good. But one of the things controlled by the password I recently had to change is my ability to check email on my phone. No problem, I find the password (let's say it was 5=EtH!duWaz8) and I couldn't find an equal sign in any of my phone's keyboard layers to save my life.

My work-around involved emailing it to another email account I can get on my phone and doing a copy-paste job. Menial tasks should be easy, they shouldn't require as much creativity to accomplish.

Mobile biometrics can help.