Microsoft has been a proponent of password-free technology for some time, emphasizing that it wants traditional and insecure passwords to become extinct. The company has invested in a variety of solutions over the past few years, such as Windows Hello, Microsoft Authenticator, FIDO2 security keys, and a palm-to-palm authentication system, among others.
Now the company has highlighted the steps it has taken to reduce the use of passwords during 2020 and has stated that it plans to make passwords a thing of the past for all its users in 2021.
Microsoft has found that nearly 80% of all cyberattacks target passwords and one in 250 corporate accounts are compromised each month because of this. The company is therefore trying to transfer people to solutions without passwords. In November 2019, 100 million people used Microsoft login without a password. That number has risen to 150 million by May 2020, showing that millions of people are willing to discard passwords.
During 2020, Microsoft participated in various conferences to share its vision of a password-free future and the Zero Trust environment. The company has partnered with several security partners in the Microsoft Intelligent Security Association (MISA) to run password-free solutions.
Microsoft plans to make passwords unnecessary for users of its services by 2021. The company is currently developing new APIs and UXs for managing FIDO2 security keys and also aims to deliver a “converged registration portal” where users can manage their data without a password.