Apple is teaming up with the FIDO Alliance to work on a new smart device that will allow you to use your fingerprint or voice biometrics to authenticate in a digital world without passwords or passwords.
With the NFC chip in the Apple Watch Series 3, it will be possible to wave your finger on the sensor to unlock a device. This feature is still ‘coming soon’ but the company hinted at it when it launched the gadget in September. According to TNW, it will be used for digital sign-in, web pay, payments, and financial transactions through Apple Pay.
In addition to supporting NFC, the device also supports Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), which means you can move around in your house, and lock and unlock your door with your phone.
Further, since the tech giant has partnered with security firm Trend Micro, you should be safe when you log into websites using the setup step of signing into a third-party website on your iPhone. However, check if your site supports this before you switch to this same model of smart device.
Keep in mind that fingerprint scanners aren’t foolproof. If your phone is ever stolen, you would have to give your phone back before the thief could unlock it and start using it. This is one reason why it makes sense to use other authentication mechanisms, including passwords and pattern lockers.
It’s also important to note that authentication need not take a user anywhere. If the site doesn’t support ‘authentication-as-a-service’ (AaaS), it shouldn’t require users to log into your computer or sign into the site remotely. Websites can set up their own tools for authentication without requiring users to jump through all the hoops. It should also be noted that no matter what you use, some will be vulnerable and need to have strong passwords and security features.
It will also be interesting to see what happens when other tech companies jump onboard. For now, Samsung has already committed its support to the same technology with its Dex technology.
The move shows that the entire smart home platform is turning out to be a question of the third-party ecosystem, and not just companies like Apple, Amazon, Samsung, and Google. It will be interesting to see how their platforms manage the same, once Google and Amazon start supporting the technology.
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