People who install iOS 16 on their iPhone or macOS Ventura on their Mac later this year will have fewer captchas when logging into websites and apps. A user must prove that he is not a robot via a captcha, for example by indicating which images show a bicycle.
Captchas, alias fully automated public Turing test to distinguish computers from humans, come in different forms. In the past, the test was often a scrambled string of letters and numbers that had to be retyped. These days, for example, you have to recognize the difference between several objects or simply check a box indicating that you are not a robot.
At its WWDC 2022 developer conference, Apple showed off a technique for iOS 16 that can avoid these puzzles. The option is called Automatic Verification and was developed in conjunction with internet companies Cloudflare and Fastly.
It works with the underlying Private Access Tokens system. This uses iCloud to verify a user’s Apple ID and the device being used. A token is created from this information in the background. This proves that a user is human, without having to solve a captcha first.
Apple claims that this technique does not share sensitive user data, nor does the company know who is skipping captchas. In addition, no IP address is recorded.
Free updates for iPhone and Mac operating systems will be released in the fall. Public test versions have already been released.
Improvement: In an earlier version, macOS was called Monterey, which should be macOS Ventura. It has now been adjusted.