Google acquires 'sounds for passwords' startup SlickLogin

By on February 17, 2014, 8:00 AM
google, password, acquisition, slicklogin

Google has acquired SlickLogin, a small Israeli security startup that develops a unique, sound-based system for identity verification at websites. The "acqui-hiring deal", which means that the company's staff and knowledge will be integrated into the search giant, was confirmed in an announcement posted to the SlickLogin's website.

Put in simple words, the idea behind the startup is: In order to authenticate a user's identity and log them in, a SlickLogin-enabled site would play an almost inaudible tone. An app running on your smartphone, which you'd hold up to your computer's speaker, would analyze the tone and signal back your credentials to the website's server.

The technology can be used either as an alternative to traditional passwords or in Google's two-factor authentication system, which currently involves entering in a unique code from your phone.

Founded less than a year ago, the company has not yet released a commercial product. It launched into closed beta at the TechCrunch Disrupt in September last year. Although the terms of the deal were not officially disclosed, according to Geektime, which first reported it, the deal is said to be valued at "several million".

Google has acquired quite a few Israeli companies in recent years, including mapping service Waze, entertainment company LabPixies, and spreadsheet company iRows.

User Comments: 3

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Skidmarksdeluxe Skidmarksdeluxe said:

At least we know Google aren't semitic but why are they still referred to as the 'search giant?' Surely they should be referred to as 'world rulers' by now.

Guest said:

Wouldn't this be susceptible to an audio-logger attack? User logs in to site by playing audio from phone. Audio-logger sends time sensitive audio to remote site which does a simultaneous login?

cliffordcooley cliffordcooley, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Great now all someone has to do is listen and mimic/record, instead of watching/capturing there targets password. This seems a little easier to breach.

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