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Microsoft Seeks To Replace Text Passwords With Biometrics

By June 1, 2019May 17th, 2022Cybersecurity

For almost as long as computers have existed, various companies have promised that passwords would eventually be a thing of the past.

Over the years, a variety of different technologies have been introduced that promised to kill the humble and ubiquitous password.  Everything from biometric sensors to facial recognition have been attempted.

To date, none of those technologies have delivered on their promise.

True, most of these new technologies have found niches in the market and have been embraced by a growing percentage of the population. However, invariably, these other technologies are used in tandem with text-based passwords rather than replacing them.  If Microsoft has anything to say about the matter, that may finally change.

The most recent Windows 10 update makes it easier than ever to log into devices and a variety of online services without having to worry about passwords at all.  The secret to the company’s success lies in the fact that Windows Hello has just received FIDO2 certification, which means that Hello PINs and biometric signatures are now seen as secure authenticators.

The official press release from the FIDO Alliance, reads, in part, as follows:

“FIDO2 is a set of standards that enables easy and secure logins to websites and applications via biometrics, mobile devices and/or FIDO Security Keys. FIDO2’s simpler login experiences are backed by strong cryptographic security that is far superior to passwords, protecting users from phishing, all forms of password theft and replay attacks.”

In an accompanying statement release by Microsoft, the company observed that “no one likes passwords (except hackers).”

While all of that is true, it remains to be seen whether this latest attempt to dethrone the text-based password will succeed or not.  Even if it does, if the past is any sort of guide at all, it’s only a matter of time before clever hackers find the chinks in the armor of this new paradigm.

Jason Manteiga

Jason J. Manteiga, Vice President of Olmec Systems, has been part of the company for over the past 20 years. He believes that having a great work environment and supportive team, is the ultimate key to success. Since being in the IT realm for over 25 years, Jason, along with Olmec Systems, has been on the Inc. 5000 “List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies” and Channel Futures MSP 501 “Top Managed Service Providers in North America,” along with other awards and nominations. Jason earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He also holds certifications in Microsoft MCSE, VMWare VCP, and Cisco CCNA. In his spare time, Jason is a contributor for The Center for Social & Legal Research (Privacy Exchange) and a member of the Morris County Chamber of Commerce. His hobbies include cycling and kayaking. He currently lives in New Jersey with his wife, two daughters and son.