X Android App Beta Gets Password-less Passkeys Authentication Support

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X (formerly Twitter), is actively testing Passkeys support for its Android app. The password-less authentication mechanism is already available to Apple iPhone users.

Passkeys essentially do away with the need to enter a password. Although users can save their login credentials, Passkeys enhances security by eliminating the need to enter traditional passwords on multiple devices.

How Do Passkeys Work And What Are Their Advantages?

Passkeys is a backend user authentication system. Google had released the Passkeys feature last year. X (Twitter) began adding support for Passkeys but has limited the feature to its iOS app.

Apart from a fingerprint scanner and a front-facing camera, smartphones needn’t have any advanced hardware to support Passkeys. Upon activation, the feature generates two cryptographic keys for each account.

While one key is outward facing, and is shared with the supporting website or apps, the other is considered a “Private key”, which is stored locally. Users can choose to rely on the Passkeys option during the login process.

Instead of users typing a username and password combination, Passkeys relies on interaction between the Private and Public keys for user authentication.

Passkeys are accessible and valid on all compatible devices. Moreover, these complex strings of encrypted data aren’t stored or shared with servers, thereby boosting security. This feature could significantly reduce the efficacy of phishing attacks and minimize data breaches through account compromise.

How To Enable Passkeys For X On iOS And Android?

While X (Twitter) introduced the Passkeys feature in January this year, the social media platform limited it to the Apple iOS version. A blogger recently discovered strings of codes hinting at the viability of this feature for the X’s Android app inside the X/Twitter v10.32.0-beta. Needless to mention, the Passkeys feature for the Android app isn’t available to the general public yet. However, users could expect the feature to be included in an update for the app soon. The beta version suggests Passkeys would be accessible through Settings and Privacy> Security and Account Access> Security.


Is Username-Password Combo For User Authentication Retiring?

An increasing number of websites, gaming platforms, and Windows 11 apps are supporting Passkeys. Anything that improves security and reduces friction between a user and a platform is always welcomed. However, the traditional username and password combination isn’t going away. The majority of online platforms supporting Passkeys have assured that they will allow users to enter their credentials. It is, however, possible that the traditional method may be considered as an alternative or fallback, in case Passkeys fails.

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