iOS 16 might just help you avoid the CAPTCHA anti-bot systems that stand between you and some web sign-ins. As MacRumors noticed, Apple used WWDC 2022 to detail a Private Access Token system in iOS 16, iPadOS 16 and macOS Ventura that skips CAPTCHAs altogether for some apps and websites. Enable an Automatic Verification feature and supporting sites will use iCloud to verify both your Apple ID and your device, presenting a token that proves you’re trustworthy. You might not have to enter inscrutable text or tap pictures of traffic lights just to show that you’re human.
Apple noted that devices won’t share sensitive data linked to your account (such as the email address or phone number). The company also won’t know who’s making the verification request, so it can’t tie these checks to specific providers. The token system is billed as more respectful of privacy, as it doesn’t track your IP address. It could also improve accessibility by making CAPTCHA-verified sites usable by more people with disabilities.
Importantly, the technology could easily see widespread adoption that might extend beyond Apple hardware. Cloudflare and Fastly have already unveiled plans to support the token approach, potentially bringing it to millions of websites. Also, Apple worked with those companies and Google to make Private Access Tokens an open standard. While there’s no direct Android equivalent yet, the technology seen in iOS 16 hints at a future where few people need to manually complete CAPTCHAs.
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