Microsoft’s Passport May Save Content:

Microsoft’s Passport May Save Content: For all the criticism Microsoft’s Passport authentication service may have gotten, it may be a good concept for online content sites, according to Rich Gordon. Yesterday, the company announced that it had tied-up with security-software maker Arcot Systems to offer, later this fall, a service that will let banks require computer users to type in their Passport username and password to authenticate Visa or MasterCard credit cards.

“I don’t really like the idea of having Microsoft sit between information consumers and paid-content sites, but the company is uniquely positioned to create a near-universal user-registration system, and adding credit-card authorization is a logical next step. If a Passport ID could be entered instead of a credit card, online purchases would become much easier–and the long-talked-about “micropayment” system could become a possibility.”