TikTok is introducing support for passkeys on iPhones, allowing users to sign in with either Touch ID or Face ID instead of entering passwords. Passkeys are password replacements that can confirm your identity based on encrypted biometric authentication methods already available on your device.
TikTok is rolling out passkeys for iOS in certain regions, starting with Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America starting this month. The company plans to expand the functionality to more regions and operating systems over time, which means that a U.S. and Android launch will follow sometime in the future.
With passkeys, all biometric authentication data remains on your device and cannot be accessed or processed by third party apps, like TikTok. iOS users will now have the option to use passkeys instead of a password to sign into their TikTok account directly from their iCloud account across devices.
Users can enable a passkey by navigating to the app’s settings and selecting the new “Passkey” option. Then, you need to follow a few steps and then select “continue” on the iOS system prompt to save a passkey.
“Passkeys simplify the login process and make it much harder for an account to be compromised as there is no longer a traditional “password” that can be stolen, forgotten, or re-used across multiple accounts,” TikTok wrote in a blog post.
Apps using passkeys, including TikTok, can’t access any of the biometric data used in the authentication process on iOS devices, and all biometric authentication data remains on users’ devices.
As part of today’s announcement, TikTok also revealed that it is joining the FIDO Alliance, a nonprofit organization that aims to standardize authentication at the client and protocol layers. Last year, Apple, Google and Microsoft joined hands with the FIDO Alliance and the World Wide Web Consortium to work on removing passwords for user authentication across the platforms. Apple announced Passkeys at its Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in June 2022.
“Passwords are a hindrance to security and user experience that are long past their expiration date – which is why the FIDO Alliance has created open standards for passwordless authentication that are being utilized by leading service providers to allow consumers to have easier access to leading online services such as TikTok,” said FIDO Alliance Executive Director Andrew Shikiar in a statement.