3D Password

The 3D password is a multi factor authentication scheme. The 3D password presents a 3D virtual environment containing various virtual objects. The user navigates through this environment and interacts with the objects. The 3D password is simply the combination and the sequence of user interactions that occur in the 3D virtual environment. The 3D password can combine recognition, recall, token, and biometrics based systems into one authentication scheme. This can be done by designing a 3D virtual environment that contains objects that request information to be recalled, information to be recognized, tokens to be presented, and biometric data to be verified.

For example, the user can enter the virtual environment and type something on a computer that exists in (x1 , y1 , z1 ) position, then enter a room that has a fingerprint recognition device that exists in a position (x2 , y2 , z2 ) and provide his/her fingerprint. Then, the user can go to the virtual garage, open the car door, and turn on the radio to a specific channel. The combination and the sequence of the previous actions toward the specific objects construct the user's 3D password.

Virtual objects can be any object that we encounter in real life. Any obvious actions and interactions toward the real life objects can be done in the virtual 3D environment toward the virtual objects. Moreover, any user input (such as speaking in a specific location) in the virtual 3D environment can be considered as a part of the 3D password.

We can have the following objects:

1) A computer with which the user can type;

2) A fingerprint reader that requires the user's fingerprint;

3) A biometric recognition device;

4) A paper or a white board that a user can write, sign, or draw on;

5) An automated teller machine (ATM) that requests a token;

6) A light that can be switched on/off;

7) A television or radio where channels can be selected;

8) A staple that can be punched;

9) A car that can be driven;

10) A book that can be moved from one place to another;

11) Any graphical password scheme;

12) Any real life object;

13) Any upcoming authentication scheme.

The action toward an object (assume a fingerprint recognition device) that exists in location (x1, y1 , z1 ) is different from the actions toward a similar object (another fingerprint recognition device) that exists in location (x2 , y2 , z2 ), where x1 = x2 , y1 = y2 , and z1 = z2 . Therefore, to perform the legitimate 3D password, the user must follow the same scenario performed by the legitimate user. This means interacting with the same objects that reside at the exact locations and perform the exact actions in the proper sequence


The design of the 3 D virtual environments affects the usability, effectiveness, acceptability of 3D password. The first step in building a 3D password system is to design a 3D environment that reflects the administration needs and the security requirements. The design of 3D virtual environments should follow these guidelines.

•  Real Life Similarity The prospective 3D virtual environment should reflect what people are used to seeing in real life. Objects used in virtual environments should be relatively similar in size to real objects (sized to scale). Possible actions and interactions toward virtual objects should reflect real life situations. Object responses should be realistic. The target should have a 3D virtual environment that users can interact

•  Object uniqueness and distinction every virtual object or item in the 3D virtual environment is different from any other virtual object. The uniqueness comes from the fact that every virtual object has its own attributes such as position. Thus, the prospective interaction with object 1 is not equal to the interaction with object 2. How ever, having similar objects such as 20 computers in one place might confuse the user. Therefore, the design of the 3D virtual environment should consider that every object should be distinguishable from other objects. Similarly, in designing a 3D virtual environment, it should be easy for users to navigate through and to distinguish between objects. The distinguishing factor increases the user's recognition of objects. Therefore, it improves the system usability.

•  Three Dimensional Virtual Environment Size A 3D virtual environment can depict a city or even the world. On the other hand, it can depict a space as focused as a single room or office. A large 3D virtual environment will increase the time required by the user to perform a 3D password. Moreover, a large 3D virtual environment can contain a large number of virtual objects. Therefore, the probable 3D password space broadens. However, a small 3D virtual environment usually contains only a few objects, and thus, performing a 3D password will take less time.

•  Number of objects and their types Part of designing a 3D virtual environment is determining the types of objects and how many objects should be placed in the environment. The types of objects reflect what kind of responses the object will have. For simplicity, we can consider requesting a textual password or a fingerprint as an object response type. Selecting the right object response types and the number of objects affects the probable password space of a 3D password.

System Importance The 3D virtual environment should consider what systems will be protected by a 3D password The number of objects and the types of objects that Have been used in the 3D virtual environment should reflect the importance of the protected system


1. Critical server many large organizations have critical servers that are usually protected by a textual password. A 3D password authentication proposes a sound replacement for a textual password.

2. Nuclear and military facilities such facilities should be protected by the most Powerful authentication systems. The 3D password has a very large probable password space, and since it can contain token, biometrics, recognition and knowledge based Authentications in a single authentication system, it is a sound choice for high level security locations.

3. Airplanes and jet fighters Because of the possible threat of misusing airplanes and jet fighters for religion, political agendas, usage of such airplanes should be protected by a powerful authentication system


The 3D password is a multi factor authentication scheme that combines the various authentication schemes into a single 3D virtual environment. The virtual environment can contain any existing authentication scheme or even any upcoming authentication scheme or even any upcoming authentication schemes by adding it as a response to actions performed on an object. Therefore the resulting password space becomes very large compared to any existing authentication schemes.

The design of the 3D virtual environment the selection of objects inside the environment and the object's type reflect the resulted password space. It is the task of the system administrator to design the environment and to select the appropriate object that reflects the protected system requirements. Designing a simple and easy to use 3D virtual environment is a factor that leads to a higher user acceptability of a 3D password system. The choice of what authentication scheme will be part of user's 3D password reflects the user's preferences and requirements

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