nordpass logo

Biometrics Now Available For macOS And Windows Users

Lukas Grigas
Cybersecurity Content Writer

We’re thrilled to announce that biometric authentication for NordPass is no longer limited to mobile devices. Today it makes its way to the NordPass Windows and macOS applications. The introduction of biometric authentication to macOS and Windows adds flexibility and convenience to the login process. Let’s explore what biometric authentication is, how secure it is, and how you can set it up on your device.

What is biometric authentication, and how does it work?

Biometric authentication is a security process that relies on unique biological characteristics to verify a user’s identity. Biometric uses such individual traits as retinas, irises, fingerprints, voices, and faces to identify and verify the identity of a user when that user accesses their account — or the encrypted NordPass vault in this case.

Biometric systems, while certainly complex, essentially follow a three-step process. The first one is what you’d call enrolment: during this phase, the system records the user biometric data. In most instances, the enrollment phase happens when you first set up biometric authentication.

Once the user is enrolled, their biometric data is converted into a line of code and stored in a database – this is the second step, usually known as storage.

The third and final step is called confirmation. As you might’ve guessed at this point, the biometric system compares the user's presented biometric data with one stored in the database. After the check, it either verifies or refutes the user.

The 2021 Global Identity & Fraud Report reveals that 74% of users prefer biometrics as their primary security and authentication method. This is not at all surprising since biometrics offer quick, hassle-free, and secure access.

How secure is biometric authentication?

Opinions about the security of biometric authentication tend to split. Some cybersecurity experts see biometrics as a more secure authentication method than passwords. Others take the opposite view. However, it is important to understand that biometric authentication provides an increased level of assurance to service providers that a person is real. It does that by verifying a real-world trait, which only a real user possesses.

Essentially, introducing biometrics into the authentication process adds a road-block for hackers and other bad actors. With biometrics, only the real user can gain access. Even though a fraudster may know that you use your dog’s name or your lucky numbers for most of your online accounts, they can’t use it there and then. Additionally, biometric authentication data can only be provided by living, breathing people.

However, many cybersecurity professionals note that biometric authentication on its own is not enough. The best way to ensure maximum security for your accounts is to use it along with Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).

How to set up biometric authentication on NordPass

Biometric authentication is great. We’re huge fans here at NordPass. It has made life for our mobile users a whole lot easier, less annoying, and quicker without compromising security.

With biometric authentication set up, you will have the smoothest and quickest access to your passwords, credit cards, and other digital valuables stored in your encrypted NordPass vault. Plus, there's the added bonus of not having to type your Master Password every time you want to access your NordPass Vault.

Here’s how you can set up biometric authentication on your NordPass app.

macOS

  • Launch the NordPass app.

  • Go to Settings.

  • Under Security, enable Unlock with Touch ID.

Windows

  • Launch the NordPass app.

  • Go to Settings.

  • Under Security, enable Unlock with Windows Hello.

iOS

  • Launch the NordPass app.

  • Tap the Menu tab.

  • Select Settings.

  • Scroll down and enable Unlock with Face ID.

Android

  • Launch the NordPass app.

  • Tap the Menu tab.

  • Select Settings.

  • Scroll down and enable Unlock with Biometrics.

Subscribe to NordPass news

Get the latest news and tips from NordPass straight to your inbox.