Many businesses are still just using passwords to stay safe

(Image credit: Shutterstock / vladwel)

Security experts have once again highlighted how it’s almost 2023 and we’re still holding on to the password as our number one cybersecurity measure. 

Despite a continued stream of headlines concerning businesses suffering tremendous losses due to poor cyberhygiene practices, most employees are still being reckless with their sensitive data, sharing them with other people, or simply keeping them around for everyone to see.

Research from Yubico surveying more than 16,000 employees in different industries, and in eight countries found over half (59%) still rely on usernames and passwords as their primary method of authentication.

Multi-factor authentication

The company's State of Global Enterprise Authentication Survey 2022 found that not only do people rely mostly on passwords, but 54% also admitted to writing down, or sharing their passwords, as well. 

At the same time, almost a quarter (22%) consider passwords the most secure method of authentication. More than half (54%) said they aren’t required to go through regular cybersecurity training, while 57% admitted using a corporate device for personal matters. 

Truth be told, some are aware of the dangers posed by over-relying on passwords. Almost two-thirds (61%) think their organization should upgrade to multi-factor authentication, rising to four in five (79%) among vice presidents.

These days, many companies are tackling the challenge of authentication, trying to send the passwords to the eternal hunting grounds and move on to better things. In early June this year, Apple introduced the passkey, a new authentication method described by the company’s Darin Adler as a “next-gen credential that’s more secure, easier to use, and aims to replace passwords for good”.

Passkeys use “powerful cryptographic techniques and the biometrics built into the device” to keep accounts safe, Adler explained, with users simply needing to use TouchID, or FaceID, to authenticate to a new web app, mobile app, or service in order to create a passkey.

Earlier this month, Microsoft introduced a new feature to Windows 11, which warns users when they type out their passwords in certain apps, such as the Notepad, for example. 

Sead Fadilpašić

Sead is a seasoned freelance journalist based in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. He writes about IT (cloud, IoT, 5G, VPN) and cybersecurity (ransomware, data breaches, laws and regulations). In his career, spanning more than a decade, he’s written for numerous media outlets, including Al Jazeera Balkans. He’s also held several modules on content writing for Represent Communications.