Google has stepped up their efforts to combat fraudulent activity on the internet, and across various devices in the technology space by adding a new physical key method to verify your identity. Security Key, as it’s being called, is very much like a key that will plug into your device, and allow you to go through 2-step authentication, without going through 2-step authentication.

In other words, it will eliminate the need to obtain, and enter a code every time you log into your accounts on various pieces of hardware. It will also give Google a better opportunity to fight and combat individuals entering their Google credentials on fraudulent sites that are not Google sponsored.

In physical practice, the device will be useful and simple to use on a regular basis. Simply insert the key into your USB port on the computer that you’re using – and you’ll be prompted within the Chrome browser to accept it – and then you’ll be prompted when a site is verified. The Security Key uses Universal 2nd Factor protocol. It allows Google the opportunity to give non-Google companies and websites to use the Security Key, which will create a secure network for businesses and people to use.

Google Gmail U2F Protocol

As it stands right now, Security Key is only available on Google Chrome, but the company has voiced their hope that other browsers would add support for FIDO U2F, which is the basis for the Security Key. Right now the Security Key is for sale on Amazon and is available to serve as a physical version of 2-step authentication.

This is something that could completely revolutionize the security and tech space, but as many have pointed outcomes with its unique set of problems and drawbacks. For example, customers that use this type of authentication – have to be careful not to lose the device, or have it stolen, since that would pose the most obvious threat to security – beyond just knowing someone’s password. This though, according to Google, is a monstrous step forward that will help services like Gmail, and Google Drive become much more secure and efficient when it comes to protecting users’ information.


  1. Physical tokens and phones are easily lost, stolen and abused. Then the password would be the last resort. It should be strongly emphasized that a truly reliable 2-factor solution requires the use of the most reliable password.

    At the root of the password headache is the cognitive phenomena called “interference of memory”, by which we cannot firmly remember more than 5 text passwords on average. What worries us is not the password, but the textual password. The textual memory is only a small part of what we remember. We could think of making use of the larger part of our memory that is less subject to interference of memory. More attention could be paid to the efforts of expanding the password system to include images, particularly KNOWN images, as well as conventional texts.


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