There’s nothing worse than having your privacy violated, even if you’ve been begging for it by taking nude selfies and failing to lock them up tight. But I digress. Passwords are tough to remember if they get complicated. The idea of Google’s Authenticator or an RSA-style key makes sense. It seems Google agrees.
El Goog is rolling out support for a new way to prove you are you who are: a USB Security Key. The normal approach to two-step authorization involves getting a text on your phone to verify your identity, but that isn’t always ideal. Maybe you suck at keeping your phone charged. Or maybe you’re abroad (your author’s had to deal with that particular headache a few times) and don’t want to get slammed with roaming charges. Having a dedicated secure USB key around means you’ll be able to log into Google’s ecosystem without having to worry about phishing or having your phone handy.
Here are the initial constraints: you have to be a Chrome user, you can’t turn just any thumb drive laying around into a security key (damnit) That being said, other sites and services can choose to use the Google-adopted FIDO authentication too, and plenty of big name players like Microsoft, Alibaba and PayPal have already pledged their support. Thinking of taking the plunge? You can claim some compatible hardware for just under $20. What are you waiting for?