Authentify Updates Mobile Device-Based Authentication Software

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Authentify is unveiling an extension to its mobile device-based authentication software.

The company created a mobile app called xFA that replaces a customer's password with a digital image and a spoken passphrase last July. The app protects customers' information when they log in to bank accounts, verify transactions, and add payees to wire transfers.

Authentify supports xFA with an online service that turns mobile devices into a security token.

This week, Authentify is introducing an extension of xFA called Smart Choice. This software will determine what authentication mechanisms the user's device has access to, such as a fingerprint reader or a gesture-based keypad, and make that the second factor I the authentication process. This relieves a bank or other company of having to predetermine authentication factors that might not be relevant to a user's mobile device.

"The barrier to mass-market deployment of stronger authentication boils down to the impact on the user experience," said John Zurawski, vice president at Authentify, in a press release on Monday. "What we have done is make that experience as simple, automated and friction-free for mobile users as SSL or HTTPS is on the Web."

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Comments (1)
The concept of authentication by possession of something leads me to imagine an ATM that will dispense all my money whoever holds my bank account without asking for my PIN/password. Should the device be protected by PIN/password, it is an expanded use of PIN/password, not an alternative to the PIN/password.

At the root of the password problem is the cognitive phenomena called "interference of memory", by which we cannot firmly remember more than 5 text passwords on average. What worries us is not the password, but the textual password. The textual memory is only a small part of what we remember. We could think of making use of the larger part of our memory that is less subject to interference of memory. More attention could be paid to the efforts of expanding the password system to include images, particularly KNOWN images, as well as conventional texts.
Posted by HAnatomi | Friday, August 08 2014 at 11:05PM ET
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