July 29, 2021

Google wants to end the nightmare of confirming that we are not robots | Technology

Google wants to end the nightmare of confirming that we are not robots | Technology


It is a moment in which desperation can end with one: reaching a page and after requesting access to the private area, the system doubts our identity and wants to make sure that we are not a robot. It is clear that this measure is sadly necessary but the counterpart is to find one setting traffic lights in a still life of colorful photos or completing mathematical operations as "1 + 4 =" in which the system ensures that whoever tries to access is a being of flesh and blood and not a machine. These processes are desperate in many cases and in which a valuable time is lost. And yet, they could have the days numbered.

Strip published in S Moda.
Strip published in S Moda.

Google announced last week the launch of reCaptcha in its third version, a new iteration of this sophisticated validation system that, for the first time, frees humans from having to do anything to prove their identity. In all previous accreditation systems, the user has had to carry out some type of action that is unfeasible for a machine, such as identifying elements in blurry photographs or, in the latest version, marking a box that accompanies the text "I am not a robot". However, Google wants to free us from a simple click of the mouse with a system that determines for us whether we are human or not.

This is precisely the spirit of reCaptcha v3, a user authentication system that is based solely on the analysis of user behavior in a certain site to rule out that it is a bot. The idea is simple: humans and machines are very different in their activity on a web page, being the first erratic and capricious, while the seconds follow patterns more mathematical and without an explicable coherence. Thus, for example, an administrator can deduce that his web is being besieged by an army of robots when he verifies that a massive attempt of records in a page of opinions, for example, does not have an equivalent number in approximation of published opinions.

Comfort versus privacy

There is no doubt that reCaptcha v3 will mean a significant advance in the experience of using the websites that install it, since the user will not be aware at any time that it is being monitored jealously. With its application "the usability of the webs will improve", explains Fernando Suárez, vice president of the Council of Computer Engineering Colleges. This expert warns of a toll that the user must assume for this automation: his privacy. "It's scary to know that the system obtains information not only from the pages we visit, but from the behavior we show inside it," he says. Suarez refers to the fact that the system tracks the user's activity until the moment of identification until it determines whether it is human or not.

Why do you snoop reCaptcha in our mouse and keyboard movements? This new method of identification is based on a system of scores from 1 to 10 in which the closer we get to the upper end, the more likely we are to be human. Each user will accumulate a scoring so that it can serve to identify the user as a human based on activity on the web, and all this for the sake of system automation. The system API is now available for web administrators who wish to start installing reCaptcha v3.

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