1Password is to get rid of passwords, with passkey support on the way

1Password password manager
(Image credit: 1Password)

1Password, one of the most well-known password managers around, will soon be getting rid of passwords altogether, opting to support passkeys instead. 

Touted as the successor to passwords, passkeys save credentials to your devices in a secure way, allowing you to login to your accounts instantly without needing to remember any codes or phrases. 

1Password claims that users will soon be able to generate, manage, and use passkeys with its platform, and that come summer 2023, no master password will be needed to access their vault, as this can be accessed via a passkey too.

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No more memorizing

1Password initially announced its support for passkeys in November 2022, stating that early 2023 would be the likely estimate of their arrival within its platform. 

In an accompanying video, CPO Steve Won commented on Apple's atempt to monolopize passkeys, becoming one of the first big tech companies to support the technology.  

In a recent blog post about the passkeys, Won mentioned that unlocking 1Password without a master password is already possible with biometrics, such as a fingerprint of via facial recognition. 

However, as Won puts it, biometrics "don’t actually replace the password; they only mask it. That’s why 1Password asks you to type in your password periodically in order to ensure that you have it memorized."

Passkeys also make use of biometrics to authenticate your identity, but the password layer is eliminated altogether. 

Passkeys makes use of two keys - a public and private key. These are a strongly encrypted set of random codes, and are unique for every service you have. The public key is stored on the cloud, whilst the private key is stored on your device only, making it resistant to phishing attacks. The two keys are combined once you authenticate using your biometric data, and grant you access to your account. 

Many digital services currently support the use of passkeys for users to access their accounts, such as PayPal and eBay, and many more are expected to join their ranks going forward. 

Most of big tech seems to be heading towards ditching passwords too, with Apple Google and Microsoft and many others all supporting passkeys as well. They are also board-level members of the FIDO alliance, the organization behind determining the standards behind passkey technology.

Lewis Maddison
Staff Writer

Lewis Maddison is a Staff Writer at TechRadar Pro. His area of expertise is online security and protection, which includes tools and software such as password managers. 

His coverage also focuses on the usage habits of technology in both personal and professional settings - particularly its relation to social and cultural issues - and revels in uncovering stories that might not otherwise see the light of day.

He has a BA in Philosophy from the University of London, with a year spent studying abroad in the sunny climes of Malta.