Password Authentication Coming

One day soon we won’t be using passwords, we’ll have a cryptographic card or some other token-like authentication. Robert McMillan in Wired (Jan 18)  –  Google Declares War on the Password  – summarize points made by Google Vice President of Security Eric Grosse and Engineer Mayank Upadhyay about the future for online security.

Thus, they’re experimenting with new ways to replace the password, including a tiny Yubico cryptographic card that — when slid into a USB (Universal Serial Bus) reader — can automatically log a web surfer into Google. They’ve had to modify Google’s web browser to work with these cards, but there’s no software download and once the browser support is there, they’re easy to use. You log into the website, plug in the USB stick and then register it with a single mouse click.

What if we lose the token?

Facebook Graph Search as an Information Tool

Phil Bradley, writing as an information professional, finds much to value and exploit in Facebook’s new Graph Search. Facebook has started with places, people, and photographs – mainly friends – but eventually it will be a way to be found and to find others.

So – the library needs to have a Facebook presence; it’s becoming vital. However, that’s only stage number one. Stage two is that library and other professional staff also need to be on Facebook, so that they can be found. For example – I have an interest in American History (the Civil War to be precise) and if I’m going to the States to speak at a conference, I’m going to be keen to see if I can pop in some visits to places that will interest me about the Civil War. Yes, of course I can do a general search and get some stuff, but that’s still very clinical. However – if I can see who is going to the conference, and they’re friends of mine, I can use Graph Search to find out if any of their friends are into the same interests, or work at a useful library and maybe I can get an introduction to hook up to an expert quickly. Because of the friendship element, I suspect that I’ll have a much richer experience than if I just wander into the local museum or library.

Valuable read – Why the new Facebook Graph Search is important for librarians by Phil Bradley (Jan 17)