Daily Management Review

Yahoo Does Away with its E-mail Password for Android and iOS Phones


Yahoo Does Away with its E-mail Password for Android and iOS Phones
From Thursday users of Yahoo Mail app on both iOS and Android will not have to key in passwords as the new service called Yahoo Account Key will use smartphones to verify identities in lieu of traditional passwords.
This is Yahoo's next step in password security and that is to eliminate them altogether.
The company announced this new development on Thursday.
The Account Key service will send a message to the smartphone connected to the account from Thursday when users who sign up for Account Key try to access Yahoo Mail. The users would no longer need to enter their password and the account key would serve as the password instead.
Users can indicate it is a legitimate attempt to get into the account with a tap on ‘yes’ and with a tap on ‘no’, they would deny unauthorized access.
Users can verify identities through an email or a text message sent to alternative accounts and numbers in case the users end up losing or have their cell phones stolen.
Account Key is more secure than traditional passwords because it prohibits anyone from signing in to access an account without the verification that Account Key provides, said Dylan Casey, vice president of product management, in a blog post on Yahoo's Tumblr page.
While experts applauded the move by Yahoo, they were also skeptical about the step achieving the ultimate objective. Satnam Narang, a security manager with Symantec says the step by Yahoo falls short of the golden standard of what's known as two-factor authentication, which requires users to confirm their identify with two different pieces of information.
He also expressed doubts that until a new verification method replaces passwords for good, most users will let passwords die easily and encouraged widespread adoption of password management tools.
"I think passwords are going to be around for a little while, I don't think they're going away as soon as we'd like them to. They're so ingrained in everything we do from banking to email to shopping, you name it," Narang said.
Yahoo executives announced a revamped version of Yahoo Mail that allows users to connect with, manage and search Outlook, Hotmail and AOL email accounts while signed in to their Yahoo account, in addition to Account Key verification,.
The new Mail also connects to Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook to add photos and create "contact cards" with email, telephone and social media information for contacts.
Since most people rely on passwords that are easy for hackers to guess and hence Yahoo believes the new feature will be more secure. However if the users want they can still continue to type in a password.
While still retaining its popularity as one of the world’s most popular email, it now lags behind Google's Gmail in recent year. The number of Yahoo email users declined by 16 percent this year compared to last year and the company had around 190 million users in August. On the other hand Gmail has a user base of 411 million in the same period with a five percent increase y-o-y.
(Sources:www.reuters.com & www.columbusceo.com) 

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