Yahoo Email Swaps Passwords for Smartphones

Yahoo-HQ-logo-IRL.jpgYahoo Mail users will now be able to sign into their email inbox with just their username and a smartphone, eliminating the need for passwords, the company has announced.

The system will enable users to authenticate any device using their primary smartphone, which the internet firm claims will improve security and eliminate one of the biggest hassles facing Internet users on a daily basis.

The solution was introduced as the company unveiled a new version of Yahoo Mail for both the web and mobile phones. The updated system improves the search tool for both messages and contacts, and can be used to access messages from other email accounts including Hotmail and AOL.

Swapping passwords out for a mobile account key is a step beyond the two-factor authentication offered by many other email providers including Google, and represents another step in making smartphones central to all web activity.

Users who sign up for the account key service will receive a push notification on their phone the first time they attempt to log-in via desktop with the location of the computer requesting access. Once a computer is authorised, it will have password-free access permanently, or until Yahoo detects any unusual activity that might indicate a breach.

“Email is the most prevalent way people communicate online,” said Jeff Bonforte, senior vice president of communication products at Yahoo. “However, what we want from our inbox is evolving. Mobile use requires a faster and smarter inbox.”