FAQ | What Are Apple’s New ‘Passkeys’ and Why Are They So Special?

Passkey Credit: Apple
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This week at WWDC, Apple unveiled its next-generation desktop operating system, the new macOS Ventura. One of the essential new features is Passkeys, a biometric login meant to replace passwords when logging into websites, email, and more. What exactly are these passkeys, and why should you care about them? Read on to find out.

What Are Passkeys?
  • Passkeys are part of a new authentication standard established by the FIDO Alliance to replace passwords.
  • Instead of typing in a long password, passkeys will log you into a website using biometrics such as Face ID or Touch ID.
  • It’s a cross-platform standard stored in iCloud and synced across your iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple TV.
  • Apple isn’t alone in this endeavor. Google and Microsoft are also adding passkey technology to their platforms.
  • Based on Apple’s WWDC presentation, the Cupertino company may be the first to implement this technology fully.
Why Should You Care About Passkeys?

Simple and secure is how we’d describe Passkey technology. Passkeys boost your security by eliminating the need for storing and using passwords. That’s a good thing as passwords are notoriously insecure.

Many people use easy-to-remember phrases that can be guessed easily. Those who use complex passwords can be duped into sharing their passwords in a phishing attempt.

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“Because it’s just a single tap to sign in, it’s simultaneously easier, faster, and more secure than almost all common forms of authentication today.” Apple Authentication Experience engineer Garrett Davidson

Passkeys are less likely to be hacked or stolen because they use public-key cryptography to store passwords. The passkeys are stored on a device instead of a web server and require biometric verification. You’ll need to authenticate using Touch ID or Face ID when accessing your Passkeys.

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