The Future Is Passwordless
Fingerprint on a 3D Microsoft logo

Francis Scialabba

Microsoft said that all of its accounts, from Outlook to Xbox, can now be accessed without a password. Which means you’ll be able to log in by using some combo of fingerprint/facial recognition, Microsoft’s authenticator app, and a verification code sent to your email.
This is years in the making. In 2018, Microsoft launched its first version of passwordless logins so people could ditch the old sticky-notes-taped-to-the-laptop storage method. Since then, 200+ million users have opted to live the password-free lifestyle, according to the company.
Big picture: Other tech giants, like Google and Apple, have also been working on passwordless authentication to beef up security on their own accounts—because while it’s more convenient to scan your finger for email access, it’s also more secure.
Hackers have a much easier time breaking into your email when you’ve been using slightly altered versions of “Blink182Luver” as a password for the last seven years. 
It’s much harder to swipe a user’s fingerprint or a code sent directly to their phone.
Bottom line: Microsoft said that the rapid shift to digital during the pandemic accelerated its timeline for the rollout. —MM
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