Feeds

PIN patterns go mobile

Though shoulder surfing is less of an issue

3 Big data security analytics techniques

GrIDsure has teamed up with secure communications firm Masabi to create a mobile version of the pattern technology that's touted as a replacement to PIN-based identity systems.

This will take on the hardware tokens used by companies such as RSA Security for remote identification.

Secure tokens are generally keyfob-style devices displaying a series of random numbers, changing every minute or two, which share a common seed (starting point) with a remote server. When the user connects they are asked to enter the number on their secure token, along with a password, to provide two-factor authentication: a thief stealing the token can do nothing, while someone intercepting the password is also blocked for lack of the token.

Implementing the same functionality on a mobile phone, in Java, requires a reliable sequence of random numbers and a secure connection to the server to ensure a shared seed. Masabi can provide both of these with its 3K RSA library, as long as the clock on your phone remains accurate.

Taking this one step further, GrIDsure has added its pattern-recognising technology so the phone can display a grid of numbers based on the current random supplied by Masabi's software token. The user then overlays their remembered pattern onto the grid, and presents the numbers to the remote server, confident that neither pickpocket nor hacker can gain their authentication credentials.

The authentication is still two-factor - the shape the user remembers and the application running on the phone - but can be deployed without new hardware and, hopefully, with minimal user disruption. Still, explaining to users why it's secure, and how to keep it so, might prove more challenging than developing the technology. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
Canadian teen accused of raiding tax computers using OpenSSL bug
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
Heartbleed exploit, inoculation, both released
File under 'this is going to hurt you more than it hurts me'
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.