I hate passwords as much as the next guy.
Like you, I probably have 100 online accounts that require a username and a unique password. Without a password manager or a secret code, there’s no way to keep counts secured while remembering every unique password.
Apple, Google, and Amazon are beginning to use something called “Passkeys” which eliminate
the need for users and customers to remember usernames or passwords. Rather than entering
those letters, numbers, and special characters, you’re able to log into accounts using a
fingerprint scan or face ID. You may have already seen a pop-up prompting you to save login
credentials as passkey.
Sounds great but how do passkeys work and what will you need?
You’ll need an authenticator app such as Google Authenticator, Yubikey, OnePassword, or
In each account, you’ll need to enable 2-factor authentication and set up a passkey to save in
your authenticator app. When you go to log into that account, you’ll just need to use Face ID or
your fingerprint on the phone.
It’s a little trickier when logging into an account on a computer that you haven’t used before. I
found logging into an account on a Macbook is fairly easy because mine has a fingerprint
sensor. Others will require you to use your phone to scan a QR code on the computer screen.
But trying to log into Instagram on a new computer I was asked to use the authenticator app to
enter a code that unlocks the account. Since I hadn’t set that up yet for Instagram, I needed to
open the Instagram app and log in. Then in settings, I needed to enable a passkey which sent
me a code to enter into the Google Authenticator app. Once I did, Google Authenticator
delivered 6-digit codes for login.
Those codes are good for 30 seconds at which time they are regenerated.
Passkeys will be easier and more secure since no one can log in without my face or fingerprint
but I found the initial setup to be somewhat confusing and frustrating. I’ll take a look at those
steps next time.