Microsoft announces support to go password-free for certain Windows 10 apps and services
Microsoft is looking to kill of the password and introduce other forms of user authentication such as biometric scans for its upcoming release of Windows 10.
The company is to add support for the Fast Identity Online (Fido) standard, so Windows 10 will be able to support third-party applications which enable password-free sign-on for a number of applications.
This means that you could soon log on to your Windows account and view emails and documents simply by using a fingerprint or retina scan.
Speaking at the White House Cybersecurity and Consumer Protection Summit, Dustin Ingalls, the group program manager for Windows security and identity, said that moving beyond passwords is “one of the top priorities for us here at Microsoft”.
“We believe FIDO authentication, which is the subject of great discussion here at the White House summit, is the pathway to success,” he said.
The current Technical Preview build of Windows 10 is already integrated with the FIDO 2.0 specification, Ingalls confirmed, and the operating system also supports cloud-based solutions including Office 365 Exchange Online, Salesforce, Citrix, Box and Concur.
“With Windows 10, for the very first time Windows devices and Microsoft-owned and partner SaaS services supported by Azure Active Directory authentication can be accessed end-to-end using an enterprise-grade two-factor authentication solution – all without a password,” Ingalls added in an accompanying blog post.
The move comes at a good time for supporters of biometric security, especially following recent findings that show British consumers are increasingly likely to support and use biometrics in their technology.
A study conducted by Visa Europe found that three-quarters of 16-24 year olds in the UK would feel comfortable using information such as fingerprint scans, facial recognition or retina scanning in place of traditional passcodes.
Overall, three-quarters (76 percent) of this age group said that they would feel comfortable making a payment using biometric security, with over two thirds (69 percent) believe this will make their lives faster and easier.
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