Microsoft's righteous attack on passwords to march ahead in 2021

Windows Hello on Razer Blade Stealth
Windows Hello on Razer Blade Stealth (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft is working towards a future without passwords, as highlighted by a new blog post.
  • Passwords can create security risks and be difficult to remember.
  • Microsoft supports a wide range of passwordless technology.

Microsoft has worked for years to move towards a future without passwords, or at least with significantly fewer of them. Windows Hello allows people to sign into their devices without a password and Microsoft works with several partners to allow people to use devices without passwords. A new blog post from Microsoft highlights some of the major steps forward in 2020 for passwordless technology and the future of the tech in 2021.

As highlighted by Microsoft in its blog post, passwords create security risks and can be a hassle to use. Microsoft highlights some key indicators that show that passwordless tech is on the rise:

  • Passwordless usage in Azure Active Directory is up by more than 50 percent for Windows Hello for Business, passwordless phone sign-in with Microsoft Authenticator, and FIDO2 security keys.
  • More than 150 million total passwordless users across Azure Active Directory and Microsoft consumer accounts.
  • The number of consumers using Windows Hello to sign in to Windows 10 devices instead of a password grew to 84.7 percent from 69.4 percent in 2019.

According to the World Economic Forum, an estimated 80 percent of cybercrime attacks are directed at passwords. To help people move away from passwords, Microsoft works with companies like YubiKey, HID Global, Trustkey, and AuthenTrend. In February, Microsoft also rolled out preview support of Azure Active Directory for FIDO2 security keys.

In 2021, Microsoft plans to release a converged registration portal, which allows people to manage passwordless credentials through the My Apps Portal.

If you want to add biometric security to your PC and move away from passwords, you can grab a webcam with Windows Hello or a fingerprint reader with Windows Hello.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at