Starting on build 23486 and higher releases, Windows 11 includes support for Passkeys, and in this guide, you will learn how to use the feature. “Passkey” is a secure alternative to replace passwords when you have to sign in to websites and apps supporting this authentication mechanism.
In other words, a Passkey is a token you can create on your website account and download on Windows 11 (in this case) using Windows Hello. The next time you have to access the website, instead of using the password, you can use your Windows Hello PIN, Fingerprint, or Face to sign in with the Passkey. This approach makes your account more secure since the password is not part of the process, making it harder for hackers to compromise your credentials. Microsoft says Passkeys “are phish-resistant, recoverable, and faster for users.”
This guide will teach you the steps to create and manage Passkeys natively on Windows 11.
Create Passkeys on Windows 11
To create a Passkey for a web service (or app) on Windows 11, use these steps:
Open Microsoft Edge (or Google Chrome).
Open the website with Passkey support – for example, Google Account.Quick note: You can use any web service with support for Passkeys, such as Google, eBay, etc. For the purpose of this guide, we’ll be using the Passkey feature on Google.
Sign in and open the web service account settings.
Turn on the “Passkey sign-in” option.
Click the “Create a Passkey” option.
Click the Continue button.
Confirm your account credential on Windows Hello.
Click the OK button.
Click the Done button.
Once you complete the steps, the Passkey will be created and securely stored on your Windows 11 installation. The next time you want to access the service (or app), you can use the Windows Hello authentication to complete the sign-in process instead of the service password.
Manage Passkeys on Windows 11
To view and delete Passkeys on Windows 11, use these steps:
Open Settings on Windows 11.
Click on Accounts.
Click the Passkeys tab.
Confirm the available Passkeys for your web services and apps.
Click the three-dots button on the right and choose the “Delete Passkey” option.
After you complete the steps, the Passkey for the web service or application will be deleted from your computer.
Is Passkey available on the stable version of Windows 11?
Currently, this feature only works on Windows 11 build 23486 and higher releases available in the Dev Channel, and you will need to use the Canary versions of Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome.
Can I use the Passkey on the phone to sign in on the web browser?
If you have also created a Passkey on your phone, you can also use it to sign in to your account from Windows 11, scanning the barcode on the screen.
Do I need to create a different Passkey for each browser on Windows 11?
No, you only need to create one Passkey per device. When you create a Passkey, the information is saved on the computer, and the system will make it available to every supported browser seamlessly.
What happens if I lose the device with the Passkey?
In case you lose your phone, you can still access your account using the Passkey stored on your computer. If you haven’t created a Passkey on your computer, you can continue accessing the service with a regular password.
Do I need to create a different Passkey on each device?
It’s important to note that a Passkey is unique for each device, so you will have to create a new Passkey on each device you want to access the website or service. If you have already created a key on Windows 11, you can repeat the process on your phone or use the “Use another device” option to create a new key for another device from your computer.
Do Passkeys turn off password authentication on the account?
When using a Passkey, you’re not removing the password authentication method from the service or application. You are only creating a token to make it easier for you to sign in and minimize the chances of getting your credentials compromised. If your password is compromised, the malicious individual will be able to access the account. If you know that your password has been compromised, it’s best to change it immediately.