eBay has joined the FIDO Alliance, the company announced Tuesday. Joining a legion of other Alliance members in the common goal of bringing strong online authentication standards to end users and killing the password, eBay has also unveiled its open source authentication server based on FIDO’s UAF (Universal Authentication Factor) specifications. UAF standards allow for user authentication via biometrics.
“eBay is constantly looking for innovative ways to stimulate seamless end-to-end experiences for users across platforms,”said Rajeev Angal, director of Trust and Identity Engineering at eBay “We believe that biometrics, such as fingerprint technologies, form the bedrock for future authentication methods.”
Angal highlights FIDO’s focus on cross-industry collaboration and interoperability– values echoed in eBay’s decision to make its FIDO UAF authentication server and Android client open source. In the press release announcing the server, eBay called for other Alliance members to contribute to building a strong online authentication based e-commerce community.
“The FIDO Alliance standards are the foundation for this cross-industry collaboration and interoperability for both service providers like us and the consumer electronics companies providing personal digital devices,” said Angal.
The authentication server marks a major milestone in the ongoing war on passwords, making eBay the first e-commerce company to directly achieve FIDO Certification. Furthermore, it joins a growing list of other Alliance members, like Daon, Morpho (Safran), Sensory, NTT DOCOMO and more, that have achieved FIDO Certification for their products and services in the past year.
FIDO Alliance executive director Brett McDowell commented: “By joining the Alliance and launching its open source implementations, eBay is showing clear innovation leadership as it positions web and mobile commerce globally for broad-scale deployment of industry standard FIDO authentication.”
With this latest addition to the FIDO membership and UAF ecosystem, the Internet is on its way to a more convenient, more secure era that is less dependent on passwords. The proliferation of consumer-facing mobile biometric technology has made strong online authentication more available in recent months than ever before. Now that eBay is set to enable biometric verified e-commerce, we have an important area of application that can go forward into a multi-factor future.
March 29, 2016 – by Peter B. Counter