Many online Git hosting services (such as GitHub and GitLab) allow you to 'protect' certain branches so that only project administrators can modify them.
The purpose of this is to allow non-admin contributors to work in other branches without risking the production code sitting in master.
The problem with this is that the only thing protecting the master branch from being modified by non-admin contributors is some arbitrary/non-standard setting in the web control panel for whatever Git hosting service I am using.
Is there a way that the security of this system could be improved? For example by being backed by some form of proper authentication or cryptography?