Google moves away from passwords, implements biometric passkeys instead


Google moves away from passwords, implements biometric passkeys instead
You don't need to remember a password to sign into Google accounts.
Image: Google

In a move it calls “the beginning of the end of the password,” Google began rolling out passkeys for its accounts Wednesday. The move means that users of Apple devices can sign into these accounts using Face ID or Touch ID rather than a password.

The underlying tech already comes built into iPhone, Mac, etc.

Passwords are on the way out

Passwords are the default way of accessing services online even though they are notoriously insecure. They can be phished, stolen or compromised. That gets even easier because so many people don’t take security seriously and use things like “123456” as their passwords.

In 2022, Apple, Google, Microsoft and others created passkeys as a replacement. These use biometric systems already built into iPhone, iPad and Mac to create a unique digital key. That digital key can then authenticate the user on websites that utilize passkeys.

Passkey adoption has so far been slow, but is steadily gathering steam as big companies like eBay, Docusign and PayPal adopt the tech.

Google passkeys are a reality

Google finally went from promises to reality. “Today, ahead of World Password Day, we’ve begun rolling out support for passkeys across Google Accounts on all major platforms,” it announced in a blog post today.

Any chance of actually killing off the password completely will come in the future. Passkeys are only one of the options for signing into Gmail, Google Docs, etc. Traditional passwords remain an option.

For more on this tech, which is already built into iOS, macOS and iPadOS, read Cult of Mac‘s guide to how to join the awesome password-free future and use passkeys.


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