The best passwords include letters, numbers, symbols and a mix of capital letters. They are long, complicated and hard to remember. As a result, technology companies are rushing to provide solutions that are both more secure and more convenient.
Many laptops come with built-in fingerprint readers. Smartphones and other devices are opening up options such as facial recognition and voice recognition.
Apple says its new iPhone will come with a fingerprint sensor, and Microsoft says its Windows 8.1 operating system is optimized for fingerprint biometrics.
Google, Paypal, Lenovo and others have come together in an organization called FIDO (Fast Identity Online) Alliance, which is working toward creating industry standards for forms of so-called strong authentication.
A password token could also be the answer. Google is testing tokens with their employees this year and may offer them to consumers next year. The tokens provide a way of logging in created by Yubico, Inc. They generate numeric passwords which companies have used for years as a second form of authentication.
Employees simply plug the token into a USB port or touch it on a mobile device using near-field communication.