You might not need to remember those complicated e-mail and bank account passwords for much longer. According to a new study, the way your brain responds to certain words could be used to replace passwords.
In “Brainprint,” a newly published study in academic journal Neurocomputing, researchers from Binghamton University observed the brain signals of 45 volunteers as they read a list of 75 acronyms, such as FBI and DVD. They recorded the brain’s reaction to each group of letters, focusing on the part of the brain associated with reading and recognizing words, and found that participants’ brains reacted differently to each acronym, enough that a computer system was able to identify each volunteer with 94 percent accuracy. The results suggest that brainwaves could be used by security systems to verify a person’s identity.
According to Sarah Laszlo, assistant professor of psychology and linguistics at Binghamton University and co-author of “Brainprint,” brain biometrics are appealing because they are cancelable and cannot be stolen by malicious means the way a finger or retina can.