Emoji Passwords Are Now A Thing

Photo: Courtesy Apple.
As if emoji needed anymore validation as a cultural mainstay, it looks like our favorite cartoony icons could be making their way into our passwords and passcodes. Instead of tapping out "5678" to use your debit card, you might tap eggplant, winking face, lightning bolt, green heart.

A British software company came up with the new emoji-based passcode system to cater to the large percentage of millenials who already use emoji as a regular form of communication. Their thinking: Emoji codes would be more difficult for hackers to decipher, since the emoji library would offer upwards of three million four-character non-repeating passcode combinations compared to 7,290 numeric options. Apparently, we might do a better job of remembering our passcodes if they were emoji, because people can generally remember images better than they can numbers and an emoji password would be like a story — and the brain loves stories.

Unfortunately, it has some caveats. Erik Cabetas, managing partner at a Brooklyn consulting firm, told the New York Observer emoji passcodes would have three main flaws, particularly relating to bank PIN-typing security: While tapping your emoji PIN, it would be harder to cover it from view (from people behind or around you) than with a PIN number; a PIN number can be verified over the phone; and both would fall to the same easy password scenario ("1234" would become the "top row of emoji, left to right").

We don't think that would be the case: Many ATMs already have touchscreen number pads and people feel pretty strongly about their favorite emoji — they might just be willing to scroll a page or two to get to the crystal ball.

At any rate, alphanumeric passwords really just aren't hacking it in today's world of ubiquitous email and website hacks. Adding emoji to the mix certainly couldn't hurt — especially as part of two-factor authentication (one of the best ways to ensure your accounts are unhackable).

As of now, it doesn't look like any banks or companies are taking up this emoji-based security, but we have our eggplant emoji crossed.

More from Tech

If you want to look up information about your favorite celebrities, your first instinct is probably to google them. But depending on who you're curious ...
Complaining today is much easier than it used to be. Lost luggage, bad service, extra charges, broken products — you used to have to put a letter in the ...
It's Google's 18th birthday which means it can finally see all the porn it serves up
GENERATION STARTUP presents Women In Tech, an episode of an exclusive web series with footage left on the cutting room floor. The feature documentary ...
Tonight marks the first of three presidential debates between candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Because of the debate's close proximity to New...
The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) developed a phone app that will assist you in recording and reporting police conduct. The app, Mobile Justice, ...
If you aren't registered to vote, don't panic. As a matter of fact, thanks to Snapchat, you can now do it in just one minute, reports Time. The social-...
(Paid Content) Refinery29 is now on Versy, a messaging and content-sharing app made for busy people like us
You may start to notice your Uber drivers snapping a lot of selfies, but it doesn't necessarily mean that you're riding with an Instagram addict. Your ...
Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel announced that the company has developed new video-enabled sunglasses, called Spectacles, and will subsequently be rebranding ...
You're at 20,000 feet, and you realize your flight doesn’t have WiFi — which wouldn't be a big deal, except you forgot your book at home, and none of your ...
It's a sad but true fact that a bad commute — one where you just miss the bus or subway — has the power to ruin your day. More often than not, these near...
When you think of playing a video game, what comes to mind? Is it a raucous game of Wii Bowling when you were in college? Hours spent on your Game Boy ...
If you're a Yahoo user (or ever have been), you'll want to change your password ASAP — and not just on that Yahoo account. Today, the company confirmed ...