Let’s start with where the word ‘captcha’ came from. It turns out that captcha is an acronym for Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart. The idea behind the captcha technology (and behind the original Turing test as well) is simple: it’s a test humans are able to pass, but online bots cannot. Captcha usually comes in the form of a distorted text image that must be re-typed in order to verify you’re not a computer.
Captcha technology is important because it provides simple and practical security to a variety of different things, such as protecting website registration, preventing comment spam on blogs, making sure only humans vote in online polls and more. Without the captcha technology, spammers could potentially abuse these situations by setting up numerous accounts, leaving a ridiculous number of comments, or voting an unlimited number of times in the same poll.
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