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Colour, usability and computer security

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The use of colour in user interfaces is extensive. It is typically a usability issue, and has rarely caused any security concerns. In this talk, I show that the use of colours in the design of CAPTCHA , a standard security technology that has found widespread applications in commercial websites, can have interesting but critical implications on both security and usability. For example, we have broken multiple CAPTCH As, including the scheme deployed by (one of the largest file sharing websites), by exploiting the colour patterns in these schemes.

This talk is part of the Computer Laboratory Security Seminar series.

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