Safari browser will soon support authentication via Face ID and Touch ID

By Manikanta Immanni
Safari Browser

Apple has announced some big moves in its latest iOS 14. While it also upgraded to WatchOS 7, iPadOS 13 and macOS Big Sur, an important and interesting feature it brings to its native browser is so appreciable. Safari 14 will be having a built-in biometric authentication to let users pass through websites using Face ID and Touch ID.

A Simple, Fast and Secure Way of Logging In

This new feature was announced by an Apple in its WWDC event happened earlier this week, where it also revamped the iOS with new features. In Safari 14, which is scheduled to come later this year, will have a WebAuthn component from FIDO2 standard, that let users unlock websites with biometric authentication. This was mentioned in the beta release notes and also has a dedicated video explaining how it works.

It comes from FIDO alliance, a nonprofit organization that makes such open-source online authentication tools. Apple has been part of the FIDO alliance along with many other companies like Google. And it’s now sourcing this security feature into Safari browser. FIDO2’s WebAuthn component is public-key cryptography, that uses biometric or similar hardware security keys for verification.

Also Read: Google Drive adds Touch ID and Face ID authentication on iPhone, iPad for extra security

And since it’s an API, it needs to be embedded by every developer who wanted their site to have this feature. Websites supporting this security protocol will prompt the user to register a specific ID, to make it easily accessible. Further, usage of this biometric is seen as far secure than passwords. Password login is often vulnerable to phishing or brute-force hacks. Thus, a better way of logging in.

This new method of logging is even faster than password style, as it doesn’t require any typing. It’s a breeze as unlocking a phone or an app. This isn’t the first time Apple used such authentication. iOS 13.3, which was launched last year has support for plugging in physical security keys based on FIDO2 standards, for authentication. And now, a more easy way is found.

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