Why the password must die for us to move forward – with SecureKey’s Andre Boysen

Privacy. Security. Authentication. Securing and protecting each has become more important as we move our lives from the terrestrial to the digital. The thing is that the infrastructure that was built – the password – is a throwback, a legacy to a time that didn’t have supercomputers that could crack them. Even if they did, our banking information and identity was never in jeopardy. Things have changed and so must the way we protect ourselves.

So if passwords don’t work and our world is getting more sophisticated to the point that privacy, security and authentication are becoming compromised for millions of people, what do we do?

Andre Boysen, Digital Identity Evangelist for Toronto, Canada based SecureKey, offers his thoughts on what is coming and how we can use existing concepts to bring peace of mind when securing our digital selves. This is a fascinating conversation on a topic that we should all be concerned about as more and more of us hope to leave our wallets at home…



Click here to download the transcript

Key takeaways from this episode. Click on the link and the video will take you to that clip

1. What is it like to be a Canadian company in the identity industry? 2:00
2. Who is SecureKey? 3:05
3. Is the password a bigger problem than losing a credit card? 4:00
4. Why are we still using passwords today? 5:35
5. How are payment networks a model for identity and security? 6:30
6. Do banks become ID registrars? 9:00
7. Can Facebook become an identity company? 10:30
8. 3 challenges for Facebook or Google or Twitter becoming an identify company 11:35
9. Are there multiple levels of authentication requirements? 13:25
10. Confession: I robbed a bank when I was 11 15:15
11. How do smartphones or wearables get rid of passwords 17:30
12. Is this just masquerading passwords with the devices? 21:30
13. Is the future about a single identity provider or is it distributed? 23:30
14. What are the gating challenges? 25:00
15. How does Apple play in identity and authentication 26:45
16. Case study: BC health card 28:45
17. Is authentication temporary to the phone or an app? 31:00
18. Are we moving to a “one card” identity validation? 32:45
19. What is the impact of the cumbersome password 35:35


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About Andre Boysen
Andre Boysen SecureKeyAndre is responsible for positioning SecureKey’s growth strategy, cultivating opportunities in new and existing markets, and promoting demand for the company’s solutions globally. He serves as SecureKey’s digital identity evangelist. Prior to joining SecureKey, Andre co-founded and served as chief technology officer of 724 Solutions Inc. Previously, he served as chief technology officer for Footprint Software and as chief executive officer for the company’s Asia Pacific business. In 1999, he was named one of Canada’s Top 40 Under 40 in recognition of his vision and accomplishments. From 1990 to 1994, he served as chief executive officer of Open Systems Limited. Andre has also served on the boards of 724 Solutions Inc., Dexit Inc., Footprint Software Pty. Ltd., and 305 Management Services. He earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from the University of Ottawa, an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business, and a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics Education from the University of Maine at Presque Isle. He currently lectures at Wilfred Laurier’s Schlegel Entrepreneurship Centre.

About the author

Rob Woodbridge

I'm Rob, the founder of UNTETHER.tv and I've spent 14 years immersed in the mobile and pervasive computing world. During this great time I've helped some of the most innovative companies grow their business through mobile. If you are in need of a mobile business advisor or coach, connect with me here to get things rolling.

  • Hitoshi Anatomi

    The password could be killed only when there is an alternative to the password. Something belonging to the password and something dependent on the password cannot be the alternative to the password. Neither can be something that has to be used together with the password.

    At the root of the password problem is the cognitive phenomena called “interference of memory”, by which we cannot firmly remember more than 5 text passwords on average. What worries us is not the password, but the textual password. The textual memory is only a small part of what we remember. We could think of making use of the larger part of our memory that is less subject to interference of memory. More attention could be paid to the efforts of expanding the password system to include images, particularly KNOWN images, as well as conventional texts.

    Most of the humans are thousands times better at dealing with image memories than text memories. The former dates back to hundreds of millions of years ago while the latter’s history is less than a fraction of it. I wonder what merits we have in confining ourselves in the narrow corridor of text memories when CPUs are fast enough, bandwidth broad enough, memory storage cheap enough, and cameras built in mobile devices.

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