Written by Alex Bach
With 2013 being The Year of the Breach, millions of consumers are asking, “What does the future hold for better data security?” “How can we learn from this and better protect ourselves?” Well, it won’t be quick, and it won’t be easy or cheap, but there are some hints as to what we might be able to expect in future years.
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Smart chip cards:
The major response from the massive Target breach regarding future credit card security was directed towards smart chip technology. Already implemented in Europe, smart chip technology makes it much, much, much more difficult for thieves to steal your credit card information. As there is so much relatively cheap and easy technology to scan and steal the information off magnetic strips, smart cards with PIN numbers are the next best offensive. Unfortunately they are just starting to gain attention in the US.
Going further down the road from smart chip cards would be the use of thumbprint or fingerprint technology. Apple’s iPhone 5S has TouchID built into the phone’s home key and is mainly used as a password protection but has huge potential down the road for so much more. The most recent uses for the technology could be the ability to make payments from the phone using the thumbprint, or used as government ID. The technology could also be extended, and used to make grocery or retail purchases in the future.
This is likely one that can be implemented by many users, and for free. According to a report in The Hill, 80 percent of breaches in 2012 were the result of compromised passwords–and the fact that “password” is still being used as popular password indicates perhaps what we need to do is change our password culture. Though it’s not fun and a hassle to try and organize them all, secure passwords with numerals, characters, casing, and random combinations of letters are the best ways of creating secure passwords. Hackers are good, and they still might get past your passwords, but don’t make it easy for them.