Apple Inc. strides towards passwordless future

Apple Inc. has signed up as a board member of the Fido Alliance, an organization committed to eliminating the need for passwords. Big names like Google, Microsoft, Samsung and Amazon are already part of this open industry association that promotes passwordless authentication, using the emerging standard WebAuthn.

Crux of the Matter

What is FIDO ?
The FIDO (Fast Identity Online) Alliance was formed in July 2012 to address the lack of interoperability among strong authentication technologies and remedy the problems users face with creating and remembering multiple usernames and passwords. It aims to change the nature of authentication with standards for simpler, stronger authentication that defines an open and scalable set of mechanisms that reduce reliance on passwords.
Andrew Shikiar, Executive Director and CMO of FIDO presented the organizations’ 2019 progress report by saying “We know that realizing the Alliance’s mission to move the world beyond the password ‘shared secret’ model of authentication requires making FIDO a ubiquitous feature across all of the devices, operating systems and browsers we use every day.”

What is WebAuth ?
WebAuthn or Web Authentication is a web standard published by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). It is a core component of the FIDO2 Project under the guidance of the FIDO Alliance. The goal of the project is to standardize an interface for authenticating users to web-based applications and services using public-key cryptography. In 2019, WebAuthn became an official W3C web standard.

What do these two offer to Apple?
Steve Jobs’ mastermind company already supports FaceID on iPhones, TouchID to log into apps and Apple Watch to have a gateway to use Mac. Joining the alliance means the users can expect more support for password-free authentication in iOS and macOS devices. Last year, Apple rolled out support for FIDO2-based physical security keys for Safari 13 and iOS 13.3.

Curiopedia

Apple Inc. is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Cupertino, California, that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and online services.It was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne in April 1976 to develop and sell Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer, though Wayne sold his share back within 12 days. It was incorporated as Apple Computer, Inc., in January 1977, and sales of its computers, including the Apple II, grew quickly. Within a few years, Jobs and Wozniak had hired a staff of computer designers and had a production line.

Apple went public in 1980 to instant financial success. Over the next few years, Apple shipped new computers featuring innovative graphical user interfaces, such as the original Macintosh in 1984, and Apple’s marketing advertisements for its products received widespread critical acclaim. Its worldwide annual revenue totaled $265 billion for the 2018 fiscal year. It is currently the world’s largest technology company by revenue and one of the world’s most valuable companies. More Info