Right now the majority of our online services and accounts use a username and password combo as a security measure. It’s not a perfect system as we have seen in numerous security breaches in the past, which is where two-factor authentication comes into play, offering users that additional layer of security.

Now two-factor authentication comes in a variety of flavors, ranging from one-time passcodes being sent via SMS/MMS, to dongles that sometimes banks give out to customers. The good news is that if you wanted that extra level of security, YubiKey has announced that support for the iPhone is here.

For those who are hearing about YubiKey for the first time, basically it’s a physical “key” that authenticates the user. In reality it is a USB device that you can plug into laptops that can do away with the need for passwords, or in the case of the iPhone, users can use the NFC built into their devices to scan the key.

According to the company, “By introducing YubiKey hardware-based authentication via NFC to iPhone applications, users no longer need to toggle between apps and temporarily memorize a throw away code before it expires. Now users can just tap the YubiKey to authenticate, which is four times faster than typing in an OTP! Not to mention, users and app developers no longer have to run the risk of potential security and reliability issues by relying on SMS or mobile authentication.”

That being said, support for YubiKey will depend on developers who take advantage of its SDK, something that password manager LastPass has done, so it is only a matter of time before we start to see more apps support it. In the meantime if you’d like to get your hands on the YubiKey, head on over to its website for the details.

Filed in Apple >Cellphones >General. Read more about iPhone and Security.

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