Microsoft has been offering business customers and administrators the option of doing without passwords for several months. Now this is also possible for private users. Users can forget their Microsoft password and authenticate themselves to the services with a smartphone app or other access checks such as a fingerprint scanner.
Users have been able to authenticate themselves to the Azure Active Directory without a password since March 2021. Microsoft had tested the function for the Cloud AD since July 2019 and recommends its business customers and educational institutions to say goodbye to passwords. This is more convenient and more secure against cyber attacks.
Microsoft internally without a password
Microsoft explains the waiver of passwords opposite to The Verge with the fact that computer security now extends to life. The coronavirus pandemic has accelerated development. Both the number of digital devices and cyber attacks have increased exponentially. That is why secure access has become even more important.
According to Microsoft, the company does almost entirely without passwords and more than 200 million users worldwide already have a Microsoft account without a password. With the opening of the offer for everyone, Microsoft hopes for a quick spread.
Password-free with the app
Saying goodbye to the password is quick. You need the Microsoft Authenticator app on the smartphone, which is linked to the Microsoft account. Then the Microsoft account website Activate passwordless access under the advanced security settings. After confirmation in the app, the password can be deleted from the memory. This process can be undone at any time by adding a password to the Microsoft account.
Passwords have been a potential security problem since their inception, as many users use simple, easy-to-find passwords and use the same password for different applications and services. This makes it easy for attackers to access data from various sources.