April 30, 2024

Anonybit Team

7 Passwordless Authentication Benefits You Must Know About

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Why bother with complex and insecure passwords when you could enjoy the freedom of a passwordless world? In this blog, discover how passwordless security can transform your daily routines, making it easier to access your online accounts, shop for products, and even leverage your biometrics for secure transactions. 

The Flaws Of Traditional Password-Based Authentication

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The following three factors determine whether authentication within an enterprise is efficient:

  • Ease of access on the user side
  • Level of security sufficient to protect business applications and user accounts
  • Reasonable cost of implementing and managing authentication within the enterprise

Considering these three factors, password-based authentication lacks in all of the mentioned areas for efficient authentication.

Users need to remember multiple passwords with different rules for creating them. This leads to frequent password reset requests, prolonging the login process, and impacting the user experience.

The Vulnerabilities of Password-Based Authentication

Passwords are easily guessed, stolen, or compromised. Phishing attacks and social engineering pose significant threats to traditional password authentication. Attackers trick users into giving up their passwords through deceptive emails, websites, or phone calls. Once obtained, these passwords can access the victim’s accounts. Phishing is particularly effective because it targets the human element, exploiting trust and social behavior rather than technical vulnerabilities.

The Hidden Costs of Password Management and Data Breaches

Although the cost of implementing and managing password-based authentication might seem negligible, there are also costs related to help desk inquiries for password resets and, of course, the cost of a potential data breach. 2023 the average total cost per data breach worldwide was $4.45 million. 

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Understanding Passwordless Authentication

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Passwordless authentication is a method of verifying a user’s identity without a traditional password. This approach aims to enhance security and improve user experience by eliminating the weaknesses associated with passwords, such as susceptibility to breaches, poor user management, and phishing attacks. Passwordless authentication methods leverage alternative verification techniques, such as biometrics, hardware tokens, and one-time codes. 

Popular Ways of Passwordless Authentication

1. Biometric Authentication

  • Uses unique biological traits like fingerprints, selfies, or palms to verify identity.
  • Pros: Highly secure, difficult to replicate or steal, and convenient for users.
  • Cons: Requires specific hardware (e.g., fingerprint scanners or facial recognition cameras).

2. Hardware Tokens

Physical devices, such as USB security keys, that users possess to authenticate themselves, for example, FIDO security keys.

  • Pros: Secure as they are difficult to replicate and require physical possession.
  • Cons: Can be lost, stolen, or damaged, and require users to carry the token.

3. One-Time Codes

  • Single-use codes are sent to a user’s device via SMS, email, or an authenticator app. The user must enter this code to gain access.
  • Pros: Provides an additional layer of security and is relatively easy to implement.
  • Cons: Vulnerable to interception (e.g., SIM swapping for SMS codes) and may be less convenient if the user does not have immediate access to the device.

4. Push Notifications

  • Authentication requests are sent to a user’s registered device, which the user can approve or deny.
  • Pros: Convenient and secure, as it requires user interaction on a trusted device.
  • Cons: It requires a network connection, and the user must have their device on hand.

5. Email-Based Authentication

  • A magic link or a one-time code is sent to the user’s registered email address. Clicking the link or entering the code completes the authentication.
  • Pros: Easy to use and does not require additional hardware.
  • Cons: Security depends on the email account’s security, and it may be less convenient if the user does not have immediate email access.

While all these ways enhance your security, true passwordless is rooted in biometrics. While other passwordless methods (methods that require pins, links, or codes) can be intercepted by hackers, biometric authentication like selfies, fingerprints, or palms offers a more secure and convenient way to access a system as these are nearly impossible to replicate or intercept. It becomes even more secure when biometric data is collected and stored on a more secure system like Annoybit’s. 

Data with Multi-Party Computing and Zero-Knowledge Proofs

Our approach leverages multi-party computing and zero-knowledge proofs in a unique way that can break down biometric data into anonymized pieces. The pieces (or “anonybits”) are not only secured individually over a decentralized network. Still, they can also be matched and decentralized, ensuring their security at rest and in process. This approach can anchor the biometric as the root of trust in a device migration scenario and eliminate the need for less secure authenticators or cumbersome 12-word mnemonic passphrases.

Enhancing Privacy and Security with Anonybit’s Integrated Identity Management

Anonybit eliminates the tradeoffs between privacy and security. Prevent data breaches, enable strong authentication to eliminate account takeovers, and enhance the user experience across the enterprise using Anonybit.

Book a free demo today to learn more about our integrated identity management platform.

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6 Passwordless Authentication Benefits

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1. Enhanced Security

Passwordless methods significantly reduce the risks associated with password-based authentication. There are no passwords to steal, guess, or reuse, making it harder for attackers to gain unauthorized access. A passwordless method, such as biometrics, provides higher security than traditional passwords.

Passwordless authentication can also offer stronger multi-factor authentication (MFA) mechanisms. Biometric-based MFA can significantly improve security by making it more difficult for attackers to gain unauthorized access even if they manage to steal one of the authentication factors.

2. Reduced costs

Eliminating passwords can reduce costs by saving employee time, lowering average handling times at help desks, and cutting the cost of IT administration. A World Economic Forum report found that employees waste 11 hours a year resetting passwords. In large companies with 15,000 or more employees, this adds up to a productivity loss of more than $5 million a year. Further, the average cost of resetting a password is in the $30 to $70 range. The report found that IT staffing costs could be slashed by $1 million by going passwordless

3. Boosted productivity

Whether it is due to figuring out how to log into their various accounts, how to reset passwords or fumbling around with the various security safeguards that seek to prevent data breaches, a lot of time is lost that could have been put to more productive use. Time is also lost in training and retraining users on password health and how to avoid phishing scams.

A FIDO (Fast ID Online) Alliance study found that financial firm Intuit experienced authentication success rates of 95% to 97% via passwordless methods compared to 80% for password and MFA-based logins and a 70% boost in sign-in speed. Simplifying the entire process and removing login friction also increases employee satisfaction. 

4. Compliance with regulatory bodies

Depending on your industry, you will likely be required to comply with the regulations protecting users’ sensitive account credentials against cybersecurity threats.

For example, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Special Publication 800-63B requires organizations to implement industry-standard access controls to protect sensitive data environments. Such controls include password encryption, hashing, and multi-factor authentication. The New York State Cybersecurity regulation also requires multi-factor authentication.

Although these guidelines are more effective than standard username and password schemas, passwordless authentication goes further. Passwordless authentication prevents cyber attacks when combined with secure session management and automatic bot and malware detection measures. 

5. Improved User Experience

One of the primary benefits of passwordless authentication is its enhanced user experience. By eliminating the need for passwords, users are relieved from the frustrations of creating and remembering complex credentials. This streamlined approach reduces friction during the login process, resulting in smoother user journeys.

Passwordless authentication also offers increased accessibility. This benefits users with disabilities who may struggle with traditional password inputs.

6. Increased Conversions 

Implementing passwordless authentication offers numerous benefits for businesses, including increased conversions. Studies conducted by the Baymard Institute reveal that over 18% of users on popular e-commerce platforms abandon their carts due to forgotten passwords or clunky reset processes.

Passwordless authentication simplifies the registration process and reduces user abandonment rates by providing a seamless login process that removes barriers and friction points. It builds trust and confidence in users by offering secure and hassle-free authentication methods. This enhanced user journey leads to increased engagement, conversions, and revenue. 

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Book A Free Demo To Learn More About Our Integrated Identity Management Platform

At Anonybit, we prioritize decentralized biometrics to offer heightened security features for our clients. By utilizing decentralized biometrics, we provide a more secure way to authenticate users without relying on traditional passwords, which are prone to breaches and hacks.

The biometric data is securely stored, protecting user information from unauthorized access and breaches. This approach enhances security and offers a seamless user experience, eliminating the need for cumbersome passwords and making login processes more efficient.

Preventing Data Breaches and Account Takeover Fraud

Our primary focus at Anonybit is to help organizations prevent data breaches and account takeover fraud by leveraging our advanced security solutions. With the rise of cyber threats and account takeover fraud, companies must adopt robust security measures to protect their sensitive data and user accounts.

By offering passwordless authentication with decentralized biometrics, we help companies strengthen their security posture and reduce the risk of unauthorized access to their systems and data. This proactive approach to security protects the organization and enhances user trust and confidence in the platform.

Balancing Privacy and Security with Anonybit

Anonybit aims to eliminate the tradeoffs between privacy and security by providing a comprehensive security solution that safeguards user data while ensuring robust authentication processes. Our platform offers:

  • Secure biometrics and Personally Identifiable Information (PII) data storage
  • Support for the entire user lifecycle from account origination to authentication and account recovery. 

By prioritizing privacy and security, Anonybit empowers organizations to protect their data and users while delivering a seamless and secure user experience.

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