In a time where password technology is so easy to breach, the world is ready for a new technology to take over. In response to the vulnerability that passwords hold, some companies have started implementing two-factor authentication.
LaunchKey, on the other hand, looks to get rid of password technology altogether and take the world into multi-factor authentication. On top of that, they just raised $3 million in funding thanks to Metamorphic Ventures and Pantera Capital. According to LaunchKey, the funding will push them to expand their team and bring LaunchKey to market in the next year.
Geoff Sanders, the president, and CEO of LaunchKey, released a statement upon the announcement.
“We already have thousands of users and developers using our next generation auth platform, and are conducting pilots with numerous Fortune 500 companies. In 2015, we will be making a number of exciting announcements including new enterprise and consumer-facing premium authentication products and services.”
The Process of LaunchKey and Their Competitors
LaunchKey works by users pairing mobile devices with their system and apps. The apps then send out authentication requests to the user, who then authenticate and authorizes access by moving an icon on the phone screen. The passwordless, multi-factored system seems to compete quite heavily with current systems in place, and LaunchKey even makes the claim that it’s cheaper to operate.
This multi-factor authentication would be great to see at companies like Coinbase or PayPal, two financial businesses where security is key. With Bitcoin bringing finances closer to the consumer and even allowing them to be their own bank, security is something that’s at the pinnacle of importance.
Right now, it seems too easy to risk financial freedom. This past year shows that businesses can be hacked left and right, leaving customer account numbers out in the open for anyone to purchase on the Darknet. It’s incredibly difficult to feel secure in the financial world right now, so LaunchKey trying to add extra security is a major improvement.
But LaunchKey isn’t the only company trying to conquer the digital space. Clef, a San Francisco-based start-up developed a mobile app that lets users send an encrypted key from their phone to their computer. The computer then recognizes that the user is who they say they are based on their phone.
OneID is also a company connects users to their devices but in a slightly different and more involved way. Jim Fenton, an engineer at OneID, explains the process in this video.
LaunchKey; however, claims to have fully decentralized the authentication process, removing common areas of attack for people with malicious intent.
David Hirsch, a managing partner at the New York-based Metamorphic Ventures, said that the legacy password system most services currently have in place is no long a viable solution. He believes all the recent security failures and hacks that have been reported over the past year alone back up his claim.
“As mobile devices and the Internet of Things become ubiquitous, our vulnerability does, too," he said. "A true password-less, decentralized, authentication platform is necessary to keep all of our personal information and data secure."
Photograph from Wikimedia Commons and Shutterstock.