Open supply password administration platform Bitwarden has made its first recognized acquisition, snapping up a fledgling Sweden-based startup referred to as Passwordless.dev, which focuses on serving to builders combine passwordless authentication know-how into their software program.
The information comes shortly after 1Password and LastPass rival Bitwarden announced its first outside funding since its inception in 2015, securing $100 million from PSG and Battery Ventures. The corporate additionally revealed on the time that it had raised a beforehand undisclosed Sequence A spherical in 2019.
The password drawback
Just like different password administration providers, Bitwarden is designed to make it simpler for people and enterprises to mechanically create hard-to-guess passwords, and retailer all of them in a safe vault. It’s all about serving to individuals to not re-use the identical predictable password throughout all their on-line providers. Bitwarden’s key promoting level, although, is that it’s open supply — or, at the least, it’s supply obtainable, that means that it guarantees full transparency into the codebase, whereas additionally permitting the group to contribute and assist develop new options.
Now, Bitwarden is trying to capitalize on a burgeoning development within the on-line safety sphere, one that’s trying to consign passwords to the historical past books — compromised passwords, in spite of everything, are responsible for most business security breaches.
Certainly, there was a concerted push towards passwordless authentication throughout the know-how panorama. Final yr, Apple, Google and Microsoft partnered in help of a brand new password-free sign-in customary referred to as WebAuthn, whereas individually Apple introduced a new feature called Passkey that enables individuals to make use of their Apple system to log-in to on-line providers with out passwords.
Bitwarden, for its half, already presents some help for passwordless authentication, such as biometric logins for Bitwarden’s own apps, whereas it additionally helps bodily two-factor authentication (2FA) safety keys akin to YubiKey. However by bringing Passwordless.dev underneath its wing, Bitwarden needs to make it simpler for builders to bake native biometric sign-in smarts into their software program, whereas permitting enterprises to modernize their present purposes that at present depend on passwords.
Based out of Sweden in 2020, Passwordless.dev has largely flown underneath the radar since its inception. However the firm supplies APIs built on WebAuthn, an internet customary developed by the FIDO Alliance and the World Broad Net Consortium (W3C) to help safe password logins. Passwordless.dev basically makes it simpler for builders to convey WebAuthn to software program with a number of strains of code, lowering lots of the prices and complexities concerned in introducing passwordless authentication to software program.
From right this moment, Bitwarden has launched a brand new beta service referred to as Passwordless.dev by Bitwarden, which permits any third-party developer to embed biometric sign-in know-how akin to Contact ID, Face ID, and Home windows Good day into their apps.
“This protects weeks of coding do-it-yourself passkey implementations,” Bitwarden CEO Michael Crandell defined to TechCrunch in an electronic mail. “Enterprises even have enterprise purposes that also depend on passwords for authentication and wish to present customers with passwordless experiences. Bitwarden Passwordless.dev helps them shortly add WebAuthn and passwordless authentication options into these purposes.”
Passwordless.dev by Bitwarden might be free via its preliminary beta interval in Q1 2023, after which the corporate mentioned it is going to provide paid plans that cowl sure ranges of utilization and options.
Whereas Bitwarden isn’t disclosing how a lot it paid for the startup or what number of staff it’s taking over as a part of the deal, it did verify that Passwordless.dev hasn’t raised any exterior funding in its two-plus years in existence, that means it doubtless didn’t break the financial institution for the acquisition.
Bitwarden additionally confirmed to TechCrunch that Passwordless.dev will proceed to be supplied to builders independently of different Bitwarden merchandise.