Google Doubles Down On Security With New Passkey Option For High-Risk Users

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Google announced it is making it easier for high-risk users to enroll in its Advanced Protection Program via a new single passkey option. Google implemented support for passkeys in early 2023, while later making passkeys the default method to sign into Google accounts.

Security is always on the minds of those who have data they wish to keep out of the public domain. Because traditional passwords can be daunting to keep up with, some have turned to password management apps, such as Apple’s upcoming password manager app. Others, however, have taken to using passkeys, which also makes signing into accounts quick and easy. While Google made it possible last year to sign into an account enrolled in its Advanced Protection Program (APP), users still needed to use two physical security keys to enroll in the program. Now, Google has simplified enrolling as well.

Passkeys are a simplified and more secure alternative to traditional passwords, and according to Google, passkeys are also 50% faster to use at sign in. The passkey sign-in method is based on FIDO Authentication, which makes them more resistant to phishing attacks, like fraudulent emails. They are also easy to use, allowing users to use a fingerprint, face scan, or a PIN instead of a traditional password.

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In a blog post, Google listed a few advantages to using passkeys. Those are:
  • Choice: Passkeys can be created on your personal devices like phones and laptops, as well as most modern physical security keys. They are designed to be used without a password by default, but can also be set up for use after a password, if preferred. 
  • Convenience: Passkeys are more convenient than traditional passwords since you don’t have to remember them or type them in every time you sign in. 
  • Security: Passkeys are more secure than traditional passwords, and legacy forms of multi factor authentication, because they are tied to your device and not stored on servers or susceptible to phishing attacks.
In order to enroll in APP using a passkey, users will first need to ensure they have a compatible device and browser. Once compatibility has been confirmed, users can follow these steps to enroll in APP using a passkey:
  • Visit the Advanced Protection enrollment page. 
  • Click on “Get started.” 
  • Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the enrollment process. Users can then choose to enroll with a passkey, or with a physical security key.
Which method of signing in do you prefer, and why? Let us know in the comments.