Microsoft is demoing the biometric authentication capabilities of its Microsoft Edge browser.
It’s the first web browser to offer native support for Windows Hello, the security apparatus launched in Microsoft’s latest Windows operating system, Windows 10. It’s also built in accordance with the Web Authentication specification, an authentication standard developed by W3C (the World Wide Web Consortium) and based on FIDO Alliance specifications.
The Microsoft Edge authentication system leverages Windows Hello’s biometric authentication capabilities along with what public-key (or ‘asymmetric’) cryptography. Essentially, the authentication process involves a server sending an authentication request to the user, and the user responding with a biometric scan and a private key issued specifically to her; the server then matches that key to the public key it has for that user, allowing for a means of authentication that its developers say cannot be guessed or reused.
The Windows team has posted a demo authentication system on its website and is currently inviting developers to start testing out the system using its public APIs, which means we should soon see some pretty sophisticated web-based security appearing online via Microsoft Edge.
April 13, 2016 – by Alex Perala