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Facebook rolls out two-factor authentication via security key for users on mobile devices

Facebook members can now use a physical key for two-factor authentication when logging in via mobile devices. It is already available on PC.

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If you use Facebook primarily on your smartphone and have always wanted a physical key-based 2FA, you are in luck from today. Mobile users of Facebook now get to employ a two-factor authentication based on a physical key, similar to how one can do the same on the desktop version. The physical key-based login is available on both Android and iOS, and Indian users can avail the same. Also Read - India's cyber agency cautions Facebook users to update privacy settings after data breach

“Since 2017, people on Facebook have been able to use physical security keys to log into their accounts on desktop to better protect their information from malicious hackers,” said Facebook in an official statement. The feature has been available for the desktop version since 2017. Also Read - Facebook's Clubhouse rival app set to launch this summer

Facebook on mobile now lets you use physical key

“It’s much harder for a bad actor to obtain both factors, which keep your password from being your last line of defense against phishing or other malicious attempts to compromise your information. We ask you to confirm it’s you with your key, which attackers don’t have. We strongly recommend that everyone considers using physical security keys to increase the security of their accounts, no matter what device they use,” said Facebook. Also Read - Facebook to take on Clubhouse, Zoom with social audio products launch

Facebook data leak

The move comes after Twitter announced its intentions to allow physical key-based two-factor authentication for its members. Having a physical key to authenticate a login is said to be one of the safest ways to authenticate. Typing a password is still susceptible to malicious software reading your password as you type. A physical key removes the necessity for that.

For those in the unknown, a physical key is similar to a USB thumb drive that needs to plug in a port for verifying a login. Some physical keys also come with wireless connectivity to help with login on mobile devices.

Apart from the physical key-based authentication systems, Facebook users can also rely on traditional 2FA systems such as SMS and an Authenticator app. If you are interested in adding it, you can enroll a security key in two-factor authentication within the Security and Login section in the settings.

Twitter, on the other hand, has confirmed bringing a security key-based 2FA system for users on the web and mobile. The company, however, is yet to announce a release date for the same.

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  • Published Date: March 19, 2021 2:25 PM IST



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