We know that passwords are easy to forget, hard to make, secure, and needed for almost everything. Passkeys may just change that!
Apple has been on the password journey for years. We’ve seen Two-Factor Authentication with SMS. Sign in with Apple and email me a login. These are time-consuming and tedious.
Apple appears on the verge of cracking the password problem with Passkeys. Rather than using a password or password management tool like Keychain. Passkeys replace passwords using Touch ID and Face ID.
How to Create a Passkey
Creating a Passkey is simple, but you need to be:
- on iOS or iPadOS 16
- Using an account or app that supports Passkeys
- iCloud Keychain must be turned on
- Two-Factor Authentication is enabled
Once you meet those requirements, here’s how to create a Passkey.
Note: Passkey is new and may not be available everywhere. The list right now is short, but more websites and apps should adopt this soon.
In this example, I’ll be creating a Passkey for Best Buy. Websites may differ on the exact setup, but the process should be the same.
- Open the Best Buy website
- Login to your account
- Go to account settings
- Find Security options
The option may say Face or Fingerprint Sign-in like Best Buy, or it may be called Passkey, FIDO, FIDO2, CTAP, or WebAuthn. All of these names refer to the technology Apple uses to create Passkeys.
- Follow the onscreen instructions. Your Passkey will be saved in iCloud Keychain, which will be available whenever you want to log in to this website again.
How To Use a Passkey
Once you’ve completed the setup for a compatible site or app, here’s how to use your Passkey.
- Launch the site or app for which you created the Passkey. In this case, it’s Best Buy.
- On the sign-in page, tap the Passkey option. (On Best Buy, it says: Sign In with WebAuthn, other sites may differ)
- Enter your email address
- Tap Continue when asked if you want to sign in using your Passkey.
- Authorize with Face ID or Touch ID, and you’ll be signed into your account.
Why is Apple Passkey Beneficial
Passkeys rely on a security practice that uses a pair of encryption keys. Every Passkey you create has both a public key and a private key paired together. Once your Passkey is set up, your device sends the public key to the website you want to sign into and then uses the private key to verify that it’s you. The crucial aspect of Passkeys is you must be using Face ID or Touch ID because faking your biometric data is extremely difficult.
What makes Passkeys Beneficial
- No Password to steal
- The Passkey stays on your device
- Face ID and Touch ID are very secure
- Sync with iCloud Keychain across all your devices
- It can be used on non-Apple devices
How to Access Your Passkeys
- Open the Settings app
- Tap on Passwords
- Use Face ID or Touch ID
- Browse the List of Sites that are associated with your passwords and passkeys.
- Select the site to see the details
You can also update or delete passkeys and passwords from this list.
Passkeys may sound like traditional passwords, but they are far more secure, and the more you know about Passkeys, the sooner their benefits become apparent.
If you have questions, post them in the comments.
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