Wang receives patent for system to reduce frequency of online hackers

May 27, 2011

Professor James Wang in the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) was recently issued US Patent #7,929,805 as a result of his collaborative research in computer security.

Wang received the patent for the image-based CAPTCHAs (Completely Automated Public Test to Tell Computers and Humans Apart) Generation System, which he developed with Jia Li, associate professor of statistics, and Ritendra Datta, a 2009 Penn State doctoral graduate.

The system uses different colors, shapes and textures to create an image, which users must then identify and determine its geometric center. Wang described this method as being much more effective than distorted texts in determining if a real user or a computer robotic program is trying to gain access to a website.

Wang filed for the patent in January of 2007. Its approval, according to Wang, signifies that his team has created something interesting and of value. He said the CAPTCHAs Generation System will reduce the frequency of online hackers, and he plans to continue to improve the system with the goal of one day preventing hackers altogether.

“I hope this product can change people’s lives on the Internet,” Wang said.

Last Updated May 31, 2011