Google Selling USB Key After Significantly Preventing Data Hacks
With every new technological development, people find a way to hack or steal information. That could come in the form of identity theft, stealing documents or worse. Google started using a Titan Security Key USB device to try to stop their employees' information from being hacked. And it worked so well that the company started selling it on its own store for customers to protect their data.
Last year, Google gave out these physical security keys, which actually attach to a keyring like a key fob for a car, to all 85,000 employees. Since then, no Google employee has reported any confirmed tampering of work-related information or accounts.
Our new Titan Security Keys defend against phishing and attempts to steal user credentials, providing the same level of security we use internally at Google → https://t.co/9Nuiq6kXkb pic.twitter.com/viiSRTLLA5
— Google Cloud Platform (@GCPcloud) September 5, 2018
"We have had no reported or confirmed account takeovers since implementing security keys at Google," a spokesperson told the Daily Mail. "Users might be asked to authenticate using their security key for many different apps/reasons. It all depends on the sensitivity of the app and the risk of the user at that point in time."
The item comes with USB and Bluetooth versions for desktop and mobile use, and comes with a USB-C to USB-A adaptor and USB-C to USB-A connection cable, according to the Daily Mail.
A company with the stature of Google giving its seal of approval for an item like this to protect data is a huge endorsement and indicator of its quality.
"We're very sure of the quality of the security," Christiaan Brand, a Google product manager for identity and security, told the Daily Mail. "We're very sure of how we store secrets and how hard it would be for an attacker to come in and blow the security up."
The version customers can buy from Google comes with what a spokesperson for Titan called "special sauce from Google," which is an embedded firmware to verify that the key hasn't been tampered with.
It speaks to the importance of two-factor authentication. This means that even if someone figures out your password to your email or another personal account, there's still another wall standing in the way of your data. That wall can be a smartphone or, in this case, the USB key.
For the user to access their data, they need to insert the USB device and press a button. This ensures that it's the right person accessing the data. The new devices are being supported by popular programs like Dropbox, Facebook, Github and Google services.
With numerous big-time hacks that made national news, like Sony and Yahoo, people are looking to secure their data. Having a physical way to "lock things up," is huge, and providing something like this as a promotional product would be a surefire way to give your customer long-term brand exposure.