31478 Industrial Road Suite 200, Livonia, Michigan 48150 sales@xfer.com



XFER has been serving the Livonia area since 1994, providing IT Support such as technical helpdesk support, computer support, and consulting to small and medium-sized businesses.

Is it Time to Move Past Passwords?

Is it Time to Move Past Passwords?

Passwords have been a staple in data security and user authentication for many, many years… to the point where the idea of using a password has become nearly synonymous with the concept of security. However, data has increasingly shown that alternative options are in fact more secure. Let’s examine some of these passwordless authentication methods, and their pros and cons.

What is Passwordless Authentication?

True to its name, passwordless authentication is identity authentication that operates without relying on a password. You can think of it like two-factor authentication (2FA), with the password factor skipped over.

Instead of using a password, passwordless authentication omits it and focuses on what would be the second factor—a hardware token, biometric, or code generated on-demand through an owned device or sent to an email, among other options.

But Why Eliminate Passwords?

Let's consider a few options that businesses have in terms of their cybersecurity:

  • Use a password
  • Use a password and supplement it with 2FA
  • Use a passwordless authentication system

Here's the thing… Passwords, when considered objectively, aren't really a great option. First of all, how likely is it that the average user is going to be able to remember about 75 unique and sufficiently complex passwords? They aren't. As a result, your IT team is either going to be inundated with password reset requests, or your users are going to take shortcuts that undermine your security. So, while a password may be a convenient option on a macro scale, it comes at the cost of your security.  Not good.

Next, we might consider adding 2FA to our authentication requirements. This certainly boosts security, but it can also frustrate users and disrupt their experience. Also not good.

Passwordless authentication measures eliminate both pain points—not only are they secure, they make it far easier for your users to access what they need to do their jobs.

Today, There are Plenty of Options for Passwordless Authentication

Having said that, there are a few drawbacks to passwordless authentication that may take some time to resolve (if it doesn't require a change in user behavior). For instance, if you go the security key route, they can be easy to lose and potentially expensive to replace. Cost is a factor for most forms of passwordless authentication, as you might imagine.

On top of this, some malware attacks are particularly effective against these measures. Time will only tell if businesses ultimately see the benefits of passwordless authentication to be worth the risks.

In the meantime, XFER is here to assist you with every aspect of your organization's IT, including its security. Give us a call at 734-927-6666 / 800-GET-XFER to learn more.

Managed IT Technicians are Reliable Repairmen
Crafting Successful Remote Work Policies


No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment
Already Registered? Login Here
Thursday, 25 July 2024

Captcha Image

Customer Login

Cybersecurity Risk Assessment


Our risk assessment will reveal hidden problems, security vulnerabilities, and other issues lurking on your network.

Request Yours Today!

Contact Us

Learn more about what XFER can do for your business.

XFER Communications, Inc.
31478 Industrial Road Suite 200
Livonia, Michigan 48150