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商业 - 科技

贝宝CTO预言“密码将死”:身份验证变革蕴商机

Chanelle Bessette 2014年05月15日

贝宝首席技术官詹姆斯•巴雷斯将终身学习作为自己的习惯。他认为,业界中很有意思的一个领域是向替代性身份验证方式的转变,其中有很多发展机遇。换句话说,这个发展带来的结果就是“密码之死”。

    
贝宝首席技术官詹姆斯•巴雷斯

    詹姆斯•巴雷斯在旧金山湾区长大,所以他自学电脑编程语言这件事也就没那么不寻常了,完全符合人们对硅谷社区的标准印象。这条路很适合他:他后来前往斯坦福大学(Stanford University)学习机械工程,之后留校当了一名程序员。

    巴雷斯当时对电子商务系统非常感兴趣,因此,无论客户是大公司还是非营利组织,他都有着相关系统的开发经验。要问他当时的目标是什么?那就是,实现电子商务自动付款。由于他在这个行业的相关经验,他之后进入了eBay工作。在那里,他创建了这家公司的核心运营系统,还实现了规模化。

    两年半前,巴雷斯调任至eBay的子公司贝宝(PayPal),担任首席技术官。他认为,这个职位的目标在于帮助世界各地的人们在全球化市场的大环境中参与电子商务,从中淘金。

    《财富》杂志(Fortune)近日采访了45岁的巴雷斯。

    1.你最欣赏的科技业内人士是谁?为什么?

    我最钦羡的两位是谷歌(Google)的拉里•佩奇和谢尔盖•布林。他们在谷歌的早期发展阶段就对公司未来的发展方向作好构想,自此以后,他们一直实现构想的路途上挑战极限,努力做得更好。

    2.你最欣赏的公司是什么?原因是什么?

    我很佩服苹果公司(Apple)所取得的成就。它的产品工艺精湛,还将不同产品精简地整合在了一起。它一直在消费科技领域开辟新的疆域。

    3.你对科技的哪个领域最感兴趣?

    如今我最为感兴趣的科技新兴事物是可穿戴科技设备和“物联网”(Internet of Things)。物联网的发展将给小型计算设备的进化带来新突破和实用的新改变。同时,物联网也将给身份识别和安全保护领域带来新的发展机遇。

    4. 对于想进入您这一行的人,您有什么建议?

    终身学习。要努力解决那些最困难的问题。永远不要满足于现状。跟优秀的人为伍。

    5.您得到过的最佳建议是什么?

    我所收到的最好的建议是,“随遇而安”。在我的职业生涯中,我遇到了相当多困难和让人困惑的状况,而且并不是每起状况中,都有丰富的数据让你理解问题根源。一个人必须学会如何运用有限的数据、自己的经验和直觉,坚定地做出艰难的决定。

    6. 你想要解决的下一个重大项目是什么?

    我认为,如今业界中很有意思的一个领域是向替代性身份验证方式的转变,其中有很多发展机遇。换句话说,这个发展带来的结果就是“密码之死”,而且,实现这个目标变得越来越可行。

    7.贵公司的业务在当下面临着哪些挑战?

    我们如今所面对的是融合和简化电子支付和电子商务的良机。移动技术和移动设备的发展给消费者提供了各种全新的支付方式。回顾历史,我们可以发现,人类首先发明的交易系统是以货易货;之后出现了货币,然后我们开发了更为广泛的信贷形式。如今,我们正身处于支付方式的另一历史性转变过程中。我们面临的挑战是确保产品与人们密切相关,简单,全球通用。

    许多公司都意识到了当下正在发生的这个根本性变革,而且一直努力利用这个机遇。长期以来,我们也十分认同这个长期发展远景,而且也在坚持投资开发新的支付方式。我们并不担心竞争,而是更多地在“如何以最快的速度推出产品”这一点上下功夫。无论是移动支付、在线支付,还是店内支付,我们都开拓创新,探索全新的端到端支付体验。

   

    James Barrese grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, and so it was not unusual -- expected, really, given the Silicon Valley stereotype -- for him to start teaching himself computer programming. It served him well: He went on to study mechanical engineering at Stanford University and eventually become a programmer for the university.

    E-commerce systems were of great interest to Barrese, and he worked on them for large companies and nonprofit organizations alike. His goal? Figure out a way to automate payments. The experience helped him land a position at eBay (EBAY), where he built and scaled the company's core operating system.

    Two and half years ago, Barrese moved to eBay's PayPal subsidiary and became the company's chief technology officer. The role, he says, is a way to help people around the world participate in e-commerce and earn money in a global market.

    Barrese, 45, spoke with Fortune.

    1. Who in technology do you admire most? Why?

    I really admire Larry Page and Sergey Brin at Google. Back in the very early days of Google, they set a vision for what they wanted to do, and ever since then, they have been pushing the envelope.

    2. Which companies do you admire? Why?

    I admire what Apple has accomplished. The craftsmanship, and simple integration of their products, has been groundbreaking for the consumer adoption of technology.

    3. Which area of technology excites you most?

    I'm really excited with what's happening in wearables and the "Internet of Things." The Internet of Things work will be creating breakthroughs and useful innovation in small computing devices. There are some great opportunities with identity and security here.

    4. What advice would you give to someone who wants to do what you do?

    Always be learning. Try to solve the hardest problems. Never be satisfied with the status quo. Surround yourself with great people.

    5. What is the best advice you ever received?

    The best advice I ever received is "to become comfortable with the uncomfortable." Throughout my career, I've been thrown into many difficult and ambiguous situations, and there isn't always a lot of data to help figure out exactly what's going on. You have to learn how to make hard and tough decisions with the limited data you have, your experience, and your gut.

    6. What's the next big project you want to tackle?

    I think the shift to alternative forms of authentication is a really interesting space and has a lot of opportunity. It's the "death of the password," and it's becoming feasible.

    7. What challenges are facing your business right now?

    What we have is the opportunity to converge and simplify payments and commerce. Through mobile technologies and devices, consumers will have new ways of paying. Looking back through history, first we had barter system, then currencies, and then we developed broader forms of credit. We're in the middle of another historic shift in the way people pay. Our challenge is in making something relevant, simple, and global.

    Many companies recognize the fundamental shift that's happening and have been working to take advantage of the opportunity. We've held this vision for a long time and have been investing in new modes of payment. We're not worried about competition, but more so about, "How fast can we make this happen?" Whether it's on mobile, online, or in-store, we're tackling a new end-to-end payments experience.

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