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Amazon Moves Toward ‘Passwordless Internet’ With Passkey Support

Amazon

Amazon said it is launching passkey support on browsers and mobile shopping apps.

The offering, announced Monday (Oct. 23), lets customers set up passkeys in their Amazon settings and use the same face, fingerprint or PIN used to unlock their device. 

“This is about giving customers ease-of-use and security simultaneously in their Amazon experience,” said Dave Treadwell, senior vice president of eCommerce at Amazon. “While passwords will still be around in the foreseeable future, this is an exciting step in the right direction. We are thrilled to be an early adopter of this new authentication method, helping to realize our vision for a more secure, passwordless internet.”

As the release noted, passkeys are a safe alternative to passwords, as they can’t be written down or accidentally shared with a bad actor. 

When a customer uses a passkey on Amazon, it proves they have access to their device and are able to unlock it. 

“Customers no longer need to worry about remembering unique passwords or using easy-to-guess identifiers, like names or birthdays,” the release said. “Instead, a customer can use passkeys to sign in to apps and sites the same way they unlock their devices—with a fingerprint, face scan, or lock screen PIN.” 

And unlike passwords, the company added, passkeys are not susceptible to phishing attacks, making them more secure than features such as one-time codes.

The launch of Amazon’s passkeys puts it in the company of tech giants like MicrosoftApple and Google, which earlier this year announced the addition of passkeys as an option for Google Accounts and 2-Step Verification (2SV).

And in March, PayPal, one of the first financial service companies to deploy passkeys, debuted the digital credentials for Google Android devices to provide an extra layer of security for the growing share of consumers who want password-free commerce.

In June, Gerhard Oosthuizen, chief technology officer at Entersekt, and Mike Storiale, vice president of innovation development at Synchrony Bank, discussed this move from passwords to passkeys in an interview with PYMNTS, underscoring the need for banks to offer passkeys and other options “in parallel” with passwords OTPs as they balance customer desire for seamless experience with security concerns.

“Many of the financial institutions who are wondering how they’re going to start to implement this,” Storiale said of passkeys, “are probably looking at” that shift with concern. 

Amazon said passkey support is available today for all customers using browsers and is gradually rolling out on the iOS Amazon Shopping app, with support due soon on the Android Amazon Shopping app.