Log into your computer with a Picture

A new security feature was introduced in Windows 8 that allows you to log into your computer by “drawing” a series of taps, swipes or circles onto a picture using your finger (for touch screens) or your mouse, rather than typing in a password.

The system uses a picture, any picture you choose, and you then set up the gestures you will need to repeat each time you want to log in. For example you may use a picture of a car, and your secret login pattern may be to tap the front wheel, draw a circle around the back wheel and swipe from the tail gate lights across to the head lights.

Find an image to use as your picture password, making sure it has several different points or features you can use to remember your gestures, and make sure it saved to your Pictures folder on your computer. Now press the Windows icon key on your keyboard, or click the Windows icon in the bottom left hand corner of your screen and type the word “Sign-in”.

In the search results, click the item called Sign-In options, and locate the “Picture Password” settings once the Window opens. Now click the Add button and you will be asked to type your existing login password. Once you have entered your existing password, click the “Choose Picture” button on the left, and select the picture you chose earlier on.

The picture will now load into the settings menu. If it looks ok, click the “Use this picture” button. Now draw the three gestures you will need to repeat to log into your computer. Use your finger (for touch screens), or mouse to tap one particular spot on the photo. Next draw a straight line between two other points on the image, and finally draw a circle around a third feature.

You will need to repeat the same gestures a second time, and then click the Finish button. When you next log into your computer, the same image will be displayed and you must follow the same gestures to be let in. If you forget your gesture, you can click the “Sign-in Options” link and log in using your password instead.