Security is one of the most pressing issues on the internet today. After all, cyber breaches and malware attacks can cost companies billions of dollars and can break trust with customers. With so much at stake, companies need to stay ahead of the curve to stay secure. One company at the forefront of security is Yubico. Jerrod Chong, chief solutions officer at Yubico, spoke to RewardExpert about how Yubico is making the internet safer. “We believe that the time for everyone to embrace strong authentication is now,” said Chong.
Founded with a Powerful Mission
Yubico was founded in Sweden in 2007 “with a simple, yet powerful mission: to make logins secure, easy and available for everyone.” The founder, Stina Ehrensvard, moved to Silicon Valley in 2011 to build her company. As stated on the company website, Yubico was founded to set new global authentication standards.
The Key to Security
The company’s core invention and key product is the YubiKey. “YubiKey is a hardware authentication device that is used to securely log in to any number of IT systems and online services — all with just one touch,” explained Chong. It can be used in conjunction with usernames and passwords, or can replace usernames and passwords all together. Yubico sells the product to companies, governments and individuals. “One of the primary differentiators of the YubiKey is its ability to support multiple authentication protocols. As a result, it’s flexible enough to integrate with almost any system or service to meet a wide range of use cases,” said Chong.
How it Works
The YubiKey is a small device that fits into a USB port. A user will register it on a device that supports two-factor authentication. Then that user has to touch the YubiKey for verification. It also works on NFC-enabled mobile devices, by touching the back of the Yubikey to the phone.The YubiKey does not require software and provides security on hundreds of platforms and applications. It provides one single security key to access all sorts of networks. That’s where the name YubiKey comes from, signifying the “ubiquitous key.”
The protection that a user gets from a YubiKey is unparalleled in the industry today. “When using the YubiKey with WebAuthn, it provides the highest levels of security available to internet users and protects against phishing and man-in-the-middle attacks, which are responsible for a majority of account takeovers today,” stated Chong. WebAuthn is a new global standard for authentication on the web.
Embraced by Tech Giants
YubiKey has found clients and fans in the biggest companies in the world. Google, Microsoft and Facebook are just some of the companies that use YubiKey. Chong pointed out that Google, “successfully achieved zero account takeovers, reduced support costs by 92%, and cut authentication time in half for their users.”
Guard Against Costly Security Mistakes
Yubico’s products can save companies a lot of money. Not only does it prevent damaging data breaches, but it also can drastically cut IT overhead. “With a seamless touch-to-authenticate experience, employee logins are up to four times faster with a YubiKey than with alternate methods like typing one-time passcodes. As a result, authentication failures often fall to zero, which saves thousands of hours each year in technical support,” said Chong. He noted that password resets alone can cost a company about $12 million per month.
Yubico’s Next Steps
Yubico recently announced a new program called YubiKey for Lightning. The new program is currently in private preview and will eventually be rolled out for iOS devices, which have in the past posed some challenges to some security programs. To find out if YubiKey is right for your security needs, check out www.yubico.com.