Prove you’re human

There is a big change that you are familiar with CAPTCHA. This is a way to prove you’re human and your intentions are good. The most used version of CAPTCHA is Google’s ReCaptcha. Did you know there’s another option to use?

ReCAPTCHA

It is one of the most used options for contact forms or login forms, for example, reCAPTCHA. The service has been around since 2007. Several major websites, such as Facebook and Twitter, use ReCAPTCHA.

The concept is really simple. By offering an option with a so-called challenge, you can prove that you are a person and not a bot. This consists of a challenge with pictures or photos. In some cases, websites also use words or just characters. This option is to protect websites from spammers or hackers.

Yes, it can be quite annoying sometimes. Remember those times that you were sure you clicked all the right images or parts of one image and the message showed up that you needed to do this again? Sometimes you would end up with a message that you failed the challenge and you should try another way.

The ReCaptcha services are part of Google. Because Google has a large reach, this service can be found in many places. In 2007 the challenge consisted of retyping words. When dealing with a CAPTCHA provided by another company, this is sometimes still the case today. Think of the services of Microsoft.

To make life easier, version 3 of ReCaptcha was introduced. This is what we call an invisible ReCAPTCHA. Based on what you do and type, the service can identify you as human or not. There are some flaws, making this system somewhat unreliable. Although this option has also been criticized a lot, it is being applied in more and more places. The criticism focused on the options for anyone with malicious intent to bypass the system.

CAPTCHA

Although many websites and web services use ReCAPTCHA, it was not developed by Google itself. That happened in 1997. The name would be introduced later. That was in 2003. CAPTCHA is short for: Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart.

hCaptcha

There is an alternative for ReCAPTCHA and that is hCaptcha. Yes, there are more options to consider. In this article, I’m focussing on just two options to use. Note the spelling of the abbreviation. hCaptcha presents itself as an independent source for offering a CAPTCHA challenge. The only question is, would you consider an alternative?

The reason to consider an alternative has everything to do with Google. As stated on the website of hCaptcha, this service isn’t part of a company that runs its advertising network. Also, with the introduction of the more user-friendly version (version 3), there is a chance that it’s possible to bypass the service. With hCaptcha, there’s more chance that the service cannot be bypassed.

With that in mind, I have to inform you that ReCAPTCHA isn’t an unsafe option to go with. In most cases, this service will do as promised. When you use a WordPress driven website, there is a good chance that the plugins you will be using have options to integrate with ReCAPTCHA. Not every plugin has that same integration with hCaptcha. But there is a general hCAptcha WordPress plugin to use.

If it comes down to privacy, you must ask yourself the question of what will happen to your data. But was it also a good idea, when it comes down to privacy, to even start with a Google Account or Gmail? If you are concerned with privacy, why did you decide to register on any of the major social media websites?

The information that you read in the article is provided by a website that also uses parts of your information. I use statistics to keep this website safe and also to find out in whatever parts of the world my articles are written. Just like most websites.

What is the best service?

If you want to use a service that is easy to use, both of them are. If you are looking for a way to integrate your plugins with a CAPTCHA service, Google’s ReCaptcha is your best option to go with. Is hCatcha no good? This service is indeed a very good option if you want more safety. The service isn’t used more than Google’s service and therefore the security is tighter. When it comes down to security you must know this: nothing is 100% secure. There isn’t such a thing as the best option when it comes down to security.

The best system is you and the measures you take to protect your data. Attempts will always be made to circumvent systems. A completely secure system does not exist. Take comfort only with the thought that you can take measures to secure systems. If you can’t figure it out, I have a valuable tip for you. Depending on where you live. If you live in The Netherlands, I can help you out by installing ReCAPTCHA or hCaptcha. Check out the other website of De Goede Huisvader (in Dutch) for more information.

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