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Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T and Sprint are building a unified user authentication system

The big four are planning a new device authentication system to deploy in 2018. We'll have to wait and see what methods they use before making any calls.

Published onSeptember 8, 2017

Google Pixel XL

In the past couple of years we’ve seen security in devices get better and better. With the introduction of fingerprint readers, iris scanning, and other biometric authentication systems, our phones are more secure than ever. Still, there are some that think these devices are still not as secure as they could be. That’s why Verizon, T-Mobile, AT&T and Sprint are banding together to create the “Mobile Authentication Taskforce”, a team who’s goal it is to develop a more secure mobile authentication system for customers in 2018.

According to the press release, this new authentication system will use services like network-based device authentication, geo-location, and sim card recognition to verify if you are actually the one interacting with your phone. While the release did not specify exactly how these services will be validating your identity, it did say that each company would be contributing all the resources necessary in order to make the idea a reality.

Personally, I’m not sure I really buy this. Of course security is an important part of our handsets, but manufacturers are constantly working on new ways to make sure we’re the one using our phones. Putting carriers in charge of this seems a little unnerving, especially when they are planning to use things like location data to verify your identity.

Still, we should wait and see exactly what the alliance proposes. If it’s better than the current system it very well may be worth looking into. Until then however, I’m going to remain skeptical. What do you think about the new alliance? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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