Recently speaking at the Interop IT conference, PayPal's chief information security officer, Michael Barrett, stated that passwords and PINs were operating on borrowed time. Barrett hopes to replace online security keys with a setup that's a blend of software and hardware-based identification. He also serves as president of the Fast Identity Online Alliance (FIDO) -- the organization's focus is to combine an effective mix of software (passwords and plugins) and hardware (USB drives and fingerprint scanners) for user authentication.
PayPal's technology boss didn't allude to his company adopting these new types of security systems for its customers anytime soon. Instead he announced that FIDO-enabled devices will be hitting the market sometime this year. Progress, yes, but until this hardware becomes more widely available, it's likely that you'll be spending more time getting acquainted with two-step logins.