Passkeys: The Future of Online Authentication
A passkey is a passwordless authentication method for websites and apps, supported by the World Wide Web Consortium and the FIDO Alliance. Passkeys were created to make it safer and easier for people to log into websites and apps. They were introduced because the old way of using passwords had a lot of problems. Passwords can be hard to remember, especially if they’re complicated. Plus, people can trick you into giving away your password, or they can steal it from a website’s server.
A group of companies and organizations, known as the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and the FIDO (Fast IDentity Online) Alliance, came up with the idea of passkey. They worked together to make the internet more secure and user-friendly.
Apple was one of the first companies to really push for the use of passkey. They announced in June 2022 that they would start using passkeys in their devices. However, passkeys aren’t just for Apple devices. Companies like Microsoft and Google have also started using them and more companies are joining.
There’s a wide range of passwordless options today, however, they are not ‘free’ as they require either third-party software or FIDO2 security keys. The goal of Passkey is to fix the problems that come with passwords. Instead of having to remember and type in a password, you can use a passkey, which is a special digital key stored on your device. Often, this key is tied to something unique about you, like your fingerprint. This makes passkeys more secure and easier to use than passwords.
How Do Passkeys Work?
Passkeys work by replacing passwords with a better and easier way to log in to websites and apps. Here’s how they work:
- Setting up: To create a passkey, you choose a special way to sign in, like using your fingerprint, face recognition, PIN, or swipe. You do this when you first register on a website or app.
- Saving: Your passkey is saved on your device, like your phone or computer. It’s kept safe and private so that only you can use it.
- Logging in: When you want to log in to a website or app, you pick the passkey option. Your device creates a special code that shows you’re the real owner of the passkey.
- Checking: The website or app checks the code sent by your device. If it matches the passkey they have stored, they let you in.
- Using on different devices: You can use your passkey on different devices, like your phone and computer. Some passkeys are stored in the cloud and sync between devices, while others need to be on each device.
- Better security: Passkeys are safer than passwords because they’re stored on your device or a special key. They protect you from criminals and can’t be used on fake websites.
Passkeys make it easier for you to log in and keep your accounts secure. You don’t have to remember complicated passwords anymore, and your information stays protected.
The Advantages of Passkeys
Passkeys have many important advantages compared to regular passwords. Here are the main benefits of using passkeys:
- Stronger Security: Passkeys provide better protection for your accounts. Unlike passwords that are easy to guess or steal, passkeys are unique and connected to your specific device or biometric data. This makes it much harder for unauthorized people to access your accounts.
- Guard Against Phishing: Passkeys are good at stopping phishing attacks. They only work with trusted websites or apps, so you won’t accidentally enter your passkey on a fake site. The browser or system checks if everything is genuine, giving you more safety.
- Convenient and User-Friendly: Passkeys are easy to use and make things more convenient. You don’t have to remember complicated passwords or type them every time you want to log in. With passkeys, you can use things like your fingerprint or face to log in quickly.
- Works on Different Devices: Passkeys can be used on different devices within the same system. This means you can use your passkey on your phone, tablet, or computer without extra setup. It’s consistent and saves you time.
- Less Need for Passwords: Passkeys provide an alternative to regular passwords, reducing how much you rely on them. They give you a password-free experience, so you don’t have to create and remember multiple passwords for different accounts.
- Better User Experience: Passkey make logging in easier and smoother. You won’t get frustrated by forgetting passwords or needing to reset them. With passkeys, the login process becomes simpler, quicker, and more efficient.
- Protection Against Data Breaches: Passkeys help protect your information if there’s a data breach. Since passkeys are not stored on servers and only a public key is used for verification, there’s less valuable data for attackers to get if a breach happens.
Passkeys offer stronger security, convenience, and a better experience for users. They help overcome the limitations and risks of regular passwords, making your online accounts safer and easier to access.
The Future of Passkeys
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and the FIDO Alliance are working together to make passkeys more popular and widely used. They want developers and companies to start using passkeys instead of traditional passwords.
The W3C is in charge of creating the rules and guidelines for using passkeys on the internet. They want passkeys to work the same way on different websites and devices, so it’s easy for everyone to use them.
The FIDO Alliance is a group of companies that wants to make online authentication more secure. They are working with big companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft to include passkeys in their products. They want passkeys to be available on phones, computers, and other devices.
Both the W3C and the FIDO Alliance want passkeys to replace passwords because they are safer and more convenient. They hope that more people will start using passkeys to protect their online accounts.
In a traditional approach to passkeys integration, software developers need to do a software integration of passkey with their application one by one which takes time and money. The simpler approach to passkey integration is the one offered by Secfense with the use of a User Access Security Broker. Secfense approach to passkeys integration makes it possible to add passkeys to all applications with frictionless onboarding, ensuring a seamless experience for end-users.
Passkeys Integration with Secfense
Passkeys integration with Secfense simplifies and enhances the adoption of passkeys as a secure authentication method in big enterprise infrastructures. By leveraging Secfense’s approach, users logging into their online platforms receive notifications from Secfense to confirm their login. At this very moment passkeys are introduced and with the next login attempt user will no longer be required to use the password but rather the passkey. This change will be done instantly on all their platforms, so if we talk for example about a telecom operator the user will be able to use the entire omnichannel with the same passkey.
Passkeys eliminate the need for passwords and enable token-based authentication, streamlining the login process. Secfense intercepts a single endpoint to handle authentication traffic from millions of users, making it scalable and efficient. With Secfense, authentication requests from various channels, including mobile, chat, chatbot, and web, can be seamlessly managed. The Secfense approach to integration opens up opportunities for companies all over to world to introduce passkeys standard much faster without the need for burdensome software integration. The easiest way to see how the passkeys integration looks in real life is to get a demo with Secfense. If you are ready to try out this approach on your testing environment you can also sign up for POV (proof of value) which usually takes a week and allows you to try out passkeys on your apps regardless if they are modern or legacy applications.