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Google Acquires SlickLogin

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Google Inc. continues to acquire startups with SlickLogin, an Israel-based startup, being the latest in the lineup. Google struck this acqui-hire deal for an undisclosed amount.

SlickLogin, founded less than a year ago by Or Zelig, Eran Galili and Ori Kabeli,was established to enable users to log-in easily into websites protected by passwords with the help of a uniquely generated sound.

SlickLogin uses near-silent tones to verify the identity of a user. The technology transmits a series of sounds from computer speakers that can only be picked up by an app on smartphones and then analyzed. Once the process is complete, it sends a signal back to confirm the identity and authenticate the login.

In Sep 2013, the company first revealed its technology at TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2013 Battlefield. The recent agreement indicates that Google is monitoring the security spaceand is keen to lap up companies such as SlickLogin, even before they are out with their commercial products.

Passwords are no longer the safest way to authenticate users. They can be easily hacked. Recently, hackers broke into Yahoo! Inc.’s free email service using a malicious computer software. They stole passwords and usernames of an unrevealed number of the firm’s accounts worldwide.

Therefore, big technology companies are trying to discover new ways so that they can  replace  passwords with a technology  that is more difficult to break into.

Google is also adopting several ways to safeguard login details and keep data safe. Currently, Google uses a two-step verification process wherein an SMS code is sent to the user’s phone, which is then used to authenticate users.

The technology from the latest acquisition can work either as a substitute for the user-password method or act as an additional level of security in the verification process.

Many other concepts such as biometrics have been considered and used by companies like Apple Inc. (AAPL - Free Report) in the iPhone 5s, but it can be difficult to implement and unsatisfactory as an experience. Motorola Solutions, Inc. (MSI - Free Report) has also considered tattoos and skin implants that could replace passwords.

Google currently holds a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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