Google launches updated Titan Security Key with FIDO2 support

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 16, 2023
Updated • Nov 16, 2023

Google announced the official launch of its latest Titan Security Key devices in select regions this week. Main improvements include support for FIDO2, which allows users to add compatible non-Google accounts to the device, a tenfold increase in storage and more.

The Titan Security Key is a hardware key for two-factor authentication. Internet and computer users may use the key instead of other two-factor authentication formats, such as using authenticator apps or messages.

The updated Titan Security Key is already available on the Google Store, but only in select countries. It is available for $25 (£30 or €35) and includes free delivery according to Google. The key is available in select regions only, including Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Spain, Switzerland, the UK, and the US.

Google introduced the first iteration of its Titan Security Key in 2018 to combat growing online security threats. Users could use the hardware key as a second-step verification option. Two-factor authentication is regarded as one of the best options to combat phishing attacks and other threats that target online accounts of users.

The updated Titan Security Key, released in November 2023, supports FIDO2. This means, that it supports passkeys. Passkeys is a relatively new authentication standard that attempts to do away with passwords entirely. Generated on user devices, only public information is known to websites and apps. Users don't need to enter passwords anymore, as they may use device PINs, biometric authentication or security keys for identity verification.

The Titan Security Key comes in two versions: an USB-A and an USB-C version. Both support NFC and have the same feature set. FIDO2 support is one of the main improvements over the first generation security key. It supports storing up to 250 unique passkeys on a single device, including those of non-Google companies such as Microsoft, Amazon, or password managers such as Bitwarden or 1Password.

Other key features include tamper-resistant hardware according to Google. The security key includes Google firmware designed specifically to verify that the key has not been tampered with. Google promises that the chip is designed to "resist physical attacks aimed at extracting firmware and secret key material".

The creation of new passkeys depends entirely on the service. Google's support page explains how this is done for Google accounts.

  1. Visit the Google Security page on the My Account website.
  2. Select Security Keys as an option under "how you sign in to Google".
  3. Activate the "add security key"

You may also generate passkeys on the very same webpage and store them on the Titan Security Key (or any other key that is compatible, e.g., Yubikey.

Closing Words

The updated Titan Security Key brings Google's hardware key to a wider audience thanks to FIDO2 support. The storage increase to 250 entries from the previous 25 is a welcome step in the right direction as well.

Google recommends that users keep another two-factor authentication option enabled for situations where the Titan Security Key can't be used or is not available.

Now You: do you use hardware security keys?

Google launches updated Titan Security Keys with FIDO2 support
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Google launches updated Titan Security Keys with FIDO2 support
Google announced the official launch of its latest Titan Security Key devices in select regions this week.
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  1. Anonymous said on November 17, 2023 at 12:41 am

    Interesting. Far less expensive than Yubikey’s outrageously priced garbage.

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