Will Brain Prints Replace Passwords?

For many years, people have sought a way to replace passwords for electronic devices. In the modern age, the use of biometric technology has increased as a solution. For the benefit of those unaware of what that is, biometrics are items like fingerprint and retina scans. It sounds futuristic, but some governments use it as a method of security already. The problem is, even that information can be stolen and duplicated, especially with 3D printers available.


A recent U.S. incident found that almost 6 million fingerprints had been stolen in a solitary hacking attempt. Typically, the areas that would require that level of security usually deal with sensitive data, or restricted areas. It is not hard to see why that could be a big problem.

Because of this, researchers have posed a few possible solutions recently. One of them deals with muscle memory. If you have seen games like Guitar Hero or Rock Band, you know that people get better after many times of playing. That is because the human brain creates a muscle memory of the sequences. The muscle movements are slightly different for everyone. That would be an interesting and viable solution, unless you became disabled.

Another interesting way also deals with brain function in the form of the brain print. The technology used in brain prints deals with the way that a brain reacts to an image, as recorded by sensors. Let’s say that you were using this technology, and the image was a picture of a loved one. Your brain would react to that image differently than anyone else. Those reactions can not be duplicated, because we do not have the ability to control how our brains react. Changing a password would be as easy as changing an image, and recording the brain’s reaction to the image.

Though this technology is still in it’s early stages, it brings up some interesting potential for the future. It was not that long ago that biometric solutions were things only you found in spy movies or novels. Now, some smartphones use fingerprint scanners to unlock them. In the next 10 years, it is quite possible that an easy to use brain scanner will be available.

That said, we won’t go so far as to say that brain prints would be a completely fool proof method of authentication, but it will certainly cause any hacker to have a bad week, at least until they find a flaw. If the brain print works as intended, that may take a while.

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