Passkeys on Outlook.com

Hi Guys,

Thought you may be interested to know what happened to me this morning.

Up to this point, I’ve primarily used Outlook.com for most of my email needs. I do have a GMail account but I don’t use it much. I’m seriously considering re-evaluating that decision now.

This morning I wanted to something really simple like change the names of my stored passkeys in Outlook.com, which involves deleting the existing keys and adding them again with the desired names.

However, after I deleted the existing keys and attempted to add new keys, Outlook would only let me save the passkeys to iPhone/iPad/Android Device or Security key. The option to save the passkey to the local Windows 11 Home Filesystem/Windows Hello simply wasn’t available. I got in touch with MS Support, gave them direct access to the PC using Quick Assist on 2 separate occasions. Eventually got through to 3rd line Technical MS Support and after a few tests/checks was told by them that the option to save the passkeys to Windows Hello locally is now no longer available to newly generated passkeys.

If that’s true then I believe it’s a corporate decision taken by MS to protect their business interests going forward. Perhaps they believe that giving users access to the local private key derived from the login PIN (or whatever) is just too great a security risk for them going forward.

Bit of a pain going forward as if true MS are forcing users to use Microsoft Authenticator on Mobile Devices/other hardware/Security Keys.

Bottom line - if you have any currently saved passkeys in Outlook.com, be wary about removing them as you may not be able to add and save them again locally to Windows Hello.

I’m just glad I don’t have to live/work in Corporate America. Would drive me nuts.

I’m away to do something a little more constructive like have a beer.

Cheers.

I don’t use outlook.com, but it’s interesting that they would drop their own most secure platform as a passkey device. Somehow, the “ignorance” of the tech-supports still makes it seem like a glitch / change of implementation.

MS accounts don’t present logging in using Windows Hello as using passkeys. Have you tried clicking on the signin options at the bottom of the screen that outlook.com asks for your credentials? For me, there are no passkeys registered for the account, but I have the options to login using Windows hello.

That’s true and you’re correct. You can still login using Windows Hello, it just seems as things stand at the moment that MS only allow saving passkeys to iPhone/iPad/Android Device/Security Key. Just did a quick test with another Outlook.com email account and the options where to save the passkey are the same i.e. one server based option has been removed. I guess time will tell if it’ll reappear or not.

Cheers.

As your using Windows 11, then why not save the passkey to Bitwarden?

What a brilliantly simple solution that’s even better than the separate device based passkeys I setup previously for the 2 PCs.

You’ve made my day m8. :slight_smile:

Cheers.