Microsoft on Wednesday announced a new passwordless mechanism that allows users to access their accounts without a password by using Microsoft Authenticator, Windows Hello, a security key, or a verification code sent via SMS or email.
The change is expected to be rolled out in the coming weeks.
"Except for auto-generated passwords that are nearly impossible to remember, we largely create our own passwords," said Vasu Jakkal, Microsoft's corporate vice president for Security, Compliance, and Identity. "But, given the vulnerability of passwords, requirements for them have gotten increasingly complex in recent years, including multiple symbols, numbers, case sensitivity, and disallowing previous passwords."
Customers can use the new feature to sign in to Microsoft services such as Microsoft 365, Teams, Outlook, OneDrive, and Family Safety, but after linking their personal accounts to an authenticator app like Microsoft Authenticator, and turning on the "Passwordless Account" setting under Advanced Security Options > Additional Security Options.