Hype about passkeys

What is All the Hype About Passkeys?

Industry Insight

What is All the Hype About Passkeys?

Passwords, ever since users started authenticating, have been the key element of cybersecurity. As years go by and as our digital lives become more and more complex, password limitations are becoming more and more apparent. Weak password choices (0000 or 123456), same password used over and over for every account, and password theft are just a few of the challenges that make password-based authentication a real problem.

A new and fun approach to authentication is the use of Passkeys. This new technology promises to eliminate passwords altogether. You have probably heard of passkeys here and there but maybe not really aware of what they are. Passkeys are cryptographic keys that are securely stored on your device (like your mobile phone for example). You can use them to authenticate without requiring you to remember or type in any passwords. This means that you can access your online accounts without worrying about password fatigue, data breaches, or phishing attacks.

FIDO and WebAuthn history

A Brief History of FIDO and Major Tech Companies

The notion of passwordless authentication has been tossed around for many years, especially in cybersecurity. With the development of new technologies like FIDO2 (a set of open standards that enable strong authentication using cryptographic keys stored on devices, such as smartphones and computers) and WebAuthn (a web API that allows websites and applications to integrate with FIDO2 for passwordless authentication) it has recently picked up steam.

Big tech companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft have been working together to homogenize passkeys and guarantee their widespread adoption. Apple and Google announced their support for passkeys in 2022. They have been working together to make passkeys compatible across their platforms.

How Passkeys Work

Using FIDO2 and WebAuthn standards, passkeys are created and stored on your device. When you first sign in to a website or app supporting passkeys, your device will generate a unique key pair. One of the keys is safely stored on your device, and the other is sent to the website or app. When you log in again, a challenge is sent by the website or app using the stored key and your device will sign it using the stored key. The website or app will verify the signature to confirm your identity.

Passkeys are 100% supported in OpenOTP Security Suite for passwordless authentication

What’s Great About Passkeys

Passkeys offer several advantages over traditional passwords:

  • Enhanced security: Passkeys are cryptographically resistant to brute-force attacks and phishing attacks, making it much harder for hackers to steal your credentials.
  • Improved user experience: Passkeys eliminate the hassle of remembering and typing in complex passwords, making it more convenient and less frustrating to log in to websites and apps.
  • Reduced IT costs: Passkeys can help to reduce IT costs by eliminating the need for password management and support.
  • Portability: Passkeys are stored securely on your device, so you can use them to sign in to your accounts from any device that supports passkeys.
  • Support by Major Tech Companies: Passkeys are supported by major tech companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft, ensuring widespread adoption and interoperability across devices and platforms.

What’s Not So Great About Passkeys

Despite their many benefits, passkeys also have some drawbacks:

  • Limited adoption: Passkeys are still relatively new, and not all websites and apps support them yet. This means that you may not be able to use passkeys to sign in to all of your accounts.
  • Device compatibility: Passkeys may not work with older devices or devices that do not have secure biometric authentication.
  • End-user education: Users may need to be educated about passkeys and how to use them securely.

Companies Like RCDevs Security Offer Passwordless Authentication

Regardless of a few drawbacks (mainly linked to the fact that Passkeys are a new technology), rest assured passkeys are going to transform our digital security environment. RCDevs Security, always at the forefront of innovation is dedicated to providing forward-thinking solutions to clients around the world. FIDO2 and Passkey compatibility means RCDevs’ offers a combination of flexibility and heightened security, a benefit for all parties involved.