Skip to main content

Google's new reCAPTCHA system is so great, you can't even see it

We've all seen the progression of different CAPTCHA systems for identifying that yes, you are indeed a human visiting a website. Google's reCAPTCHA has been the most innovative in the past few years, getting all the way to a point where you just check a box and move on. Now, the reCAPTCHA system is ready to disappear from sight entirely while still doing its job of preventing bots from compromising sites.

Every time one of the millions of daily reCAPTCHA interactions occurs it sends data to Google to be able to better understand the difference in behaviors between people and bots when they attempted to access websites. Now that data has finally paid off, and Google feels it has enough information to be able to identify if you're a real person visiting a site, or a bot attempting to compromise it, without any explicit actions on your part.

Same great security, with fewer user interactions.

The end result is the new reCAPTCHA system that simply lets you seamlessly continue using a website, passing a security check without even knowing it. This is incredibly important especially on mobile websites, where reCAPTCHA won't have to take up precious screen real estate on a checkout or sign-up page where user flow is critical.

From our perspective as users of popular websites, there's nothing new to do here fortunately. Website admins can learn more about the new reCAPTCHA from Google, and integrate it into their own sites. After they do so, their users will see fewer roadblocks to using the site while still keeping the same level of great security.

Andrew was an Executive Editor, U.S. at Android Central between 2012 and 2020.

12 Comments
  • Good, because as a human I'm having more and more trouble solving these puzzles.
  • Me as well as a robot tho
  • Dang I thought you were a cat.
  • We need a cat CAPTCHA.
  • No! I'm totally a human! I am not just sleeping on this warm laptop.
  • This is a pretty big deal.
  • Sounds cool. But concerning. And there's currently no information on their site about how this invisible format works to determine the difference between bots and humans. I can understand the concern about exposing this to "the enemy" but I'm more concerned about what kind of "machine learning" they are tracking us through.
  • Dragon, I doubt disclossing would keep it working.
  • I wouldn't know. When I try checking the source on some google pages, I'm impressed yet surprised by how complex the scripting is. I'm a fan of good programming, but not the privacy issues. And the more complex these things get, the harder it is to prove they are only used for verification. But then, it's Google. We all know they live off harvesting data.
    (edited: typo)
  • A. Even though the script is quite complicated, that doesn't mean that with the time and resources a hacker could potentially (and most probably) manage to bypass the CAPTCHA if Google would say how they determine the difference.
    B. The data Google collects on you is the same data you agreed them to collect in the Terms of Use. So while your concerns are justified, you can't really complain. You can always take another set of products and use them to use the Web.
  • It's so amazing in fact it thinks I am a robot. Yey...
  • I like the one where you
    Click The Toys And Games
    Click The Money
    Click The Underwater