In a rare collaboration of efforts, tech giants –Apple, Google, and Microsoft have announced the joining of forces in a bid to expand support for passwordless logins across multiple platforms like the mobile, desktop, and browsers. In commemoration of the World Password Day celebrated on May 5th, the collaborative efforts by the three tech giants might come one step closer to passwords being a thing of the past.
According to reports more than 80% of all data breaches are caused as a result of insecure passwords that have weak and easily guessable credentials. While improvements are continuously been offered by password managers and multi-factor technologies which still present insecure cases, Apple, Google, and Microsoft are teaming up with a solution. The collaborative effort to said to produce a sign-in technology that would be more secure and convenient.
Google recently made this announcement about the joint effort at expanding support for a password-free sign-in standard from the FIDO Alliance and the World Wide Web Consortium. What this further translates to is that users might soon have the ability to sign into apps or websites regardless of the operating system, browser, or device. The same action, such as with a verification of your fingerprint, face scan, drawing a pattern, or a device PIN, taken to unlock a smartphone multiple times daily would follow in numerous forms.
This further implies that users will also have the ability to automatically access their FiDO sign-in credentials, or “passkeys,” across multiple devices including new ones. The most interesting part is this can happen without the user having to re-enroll every account.
While Apple, Google, and Microsoft have long shown support for the passwordless sign-in standard FIDO Alliance has created, users are still forced with the need to sign in to each website or app with each device before the passwordless feature can be accessed. The three tech giants are set to change that, in the next year, although a more specific roadmap has not been announced. Passwordless FIDO sign-in standards will be implemented across macOS and Safari; Android and Chrome; and Windows and Edge. What this means is that users will have the ability to sign in on a Google Chrome browser running on Microsoft Windows, using a passkey on an Apple device. Reports say this would make it difficult for hackers to compromise login details remotely since signing in requires access to a physical device.
According to a press release by Kurt Knight, Apple’s senior director of platform product marketing, “Working with the industry to establish new, more secure sign-in methods that offer better protection and eliminate the vulnerabilities of passwords is central to our commitment to building products that offer maximum security and a transparent user experience — all with the goal of keeping users’ personal information safe.”
Jen Easterly, director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) has commended the new collective efforts of the tech giant, and calls it “the type of forward-leaning thinking that will ultimately keep the American people safer online.” Easterly added that “Today is an important milestone in the security journey to encourage built-in security best practices and help us move beyond passwords and we’re pleased to continue our collaboration.” Although the plot to kill the password has been underway for several years now, signs are that it may have finally succeeded.