Dogs and Cats-Helping to Secure the Web

Security. Its all the rage in this internet age and can be a thorn in ones side. Take for instance the verification code that you...

Horst Hoefinger  |  Jul 3rd 2008


Security. Its all the rage in this internet age and can be a thorn in ones side.

Take for instance the verification code that you have to enter to gain access to a lot of sites, just to prove you arent a robot. You know the codes Im talking about. Theyre the ones that are all warped and wavy making it difficult to discern a 0 with an o or an I with a 1.

Is that an I or a 1?

Now theres a better solution.

Asirra stands for Animal Species Image Recognition for Restricting Access. Basically its an HIP [verification process] that requires you to differentiate photos of cats and dogs, a task that is nearly impossible for even the most sophisticated bots.

The cool thing about this technology isnt really the technology but the fact that Microsoft Research has partnered with Petfinder.com to serve up pictures of the more than three million photos of cats and dogs available for adoption. A user is required to select all the pictures that are dogs (or cats) in order to gain access to the site. What’s really great is that each picture has a link to the animal’s petfinder.com adoption page. So now you can get verified and help place a pet at the same time!

You can read all about it here or go to the Asirra home page to find out more.

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