Microsoft lets you forego a password in favour of other authentication options

Nobody wants to have to remember long strings of alphanumeric codes, but unfortunately we have to in order to secure our online profiles and accounts.

Except Microsoft is looking to change that by giving you more options to authenticate yourself when logging into its services.

“Beginning today, you can now completely remove the password from your Microsoft account. Use the Microsoft Authenticator app, Windows Hello, a security key, or a verification code sent to your phone or email to sign in to your favorite apps and services, such as Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft OneDrive, Microsoft Family Safety, and more,” writes corporate vice president of Security, Compliance and Identity at Microsoft, Vasu Jakkal.

In order to go passwordless you will need to download the Microsoft Authenticator app for Android or Apple iOS. Log in to your Microsoft account via the app and then follow the steps below:

  • Log into your Microsoft account and navigate to Security and then Advanced Security Options.
  • Find the option for Passwordless Account and switch it on.
  • Follow the prompts on screen and on your Microsoft Authenticator and you’re done.

Microsoft says that this solution will reduce the risk of phishing attacks which makes sense because if there isn’t a password to steal, cybercriminals can’t breach your account. With that having been said, if you use this option, you may want to keep your smartphone close at all times.

You can switch back to using a password at anytime.

There are some limitations to the reach this Passwordless feature has. For instance, it doesn’t work with the Xbox 360, Office for Mac 2011 or Office 2010 and earlier.

We recommend heading here to see the limitations of the feature before enabling it.

So far it’s a rather convenient solution for us, even if we do make use of a password manager. That having been said, a solution that doesn’t require something another person could guess or steal gives us a lot of peace of mind.

Here’s hoping the solution is as secure as Microsoft claims it is.

[Source – Microsoft]


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