Microsoft to offer users new ‘passwordless account’ option
We’ve all been there, the moment when you desperately need access to a program or device and you simply cannot remember your password.
It’s a frustrating problem that Microsoft is determined to solve by completely nixing the use of passwords.
It’s not that Microsoft is suddenly forcing all of its users to get rid of this form of account protection.
Instead, it’s rolling out a secondary option for those of us who’d rather forgo the business of typing in passwords pre-login.
The 46-year-old tech company announced Wednesday that in the coming weeks, several of its popular services, such as Microsoft Outlook and and Microsoft OneDrive, will offer users the choice of a ‘passwordless account.’
This means, in lieu of typing in a password, users will sign in with either Microsoft‘s Authenticator app, which creates a unique numbered login code every few seconds, or with Windows Hello, which allows users to access accounts by means of facial recognition, fingerprint, or a unique pin.
An added ‘passwordless account’ option is the purchase of an external security key, like a USB drive with login information stored on it, or register a phone number to which Microsoft sends a verification code.
This will not be the first time Microsoft sets up ‘passwordless account’ options for users. Earlier this year, in March, this option was made available to corporate accounts.
Additionally, according to a recent Fintech Zoom article on the subject, nearly all of Microsoft‘s employees are already logging into their corporate accounts without passwords.
The reason for the company’s shift to password-free logins may stem from a recent uptick in cyberattacks involving hackers who infiltrate systems by targeting security access points that utilize passwords.
While the decision to go passwordless may be part of Microsoft‘s carefully crafted strategy to avoid cyberattacks, some users may simply appreciate the ease of accessing their accounts without having to memorize a password.