YubiKey authentication refers to the hardware-based access authorization tool for devices and networks. This works through the YubiKeys, which are like flash drives that can be plugged into USB-A or USB-C ports. The device is manufactured by a company called YubiCo.
Through YubiKey, users do not need to rely on SMS or email security codes anymore to pass two-factor authentication (2FA) systems. The hardware already holds a user’s password and the other half of the 2FA information required for logins. Users only need to plug the YubiKey in any device and it will automatically fulfill the authentication requirements.
YubiKey’s hardware-based authentication follows the Universal 2nd Factor standard (U2F). This feature allows the embedding of public-key cryptography on Yubikeys.
Moreover, the hardware is durable, battery-free, and water-resistant. There are several types of YubiKeys that are designed for different device compatibilities, making it accessible to computers, phones, and even network servers.