YubiKey 5Ci: The world’s first Lightning-compatible security key

The new YubiKey 5Ci is the world’s first security key that features both USB-C and Lightning connectors on a single key.
Written by Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Senior Contributing Editor

Security keys like YubiKey offer a high level of protection for your online accounts. But the problem is that getting coverage across all devices means making compromises or carrying around multiple keys, especially those who use iPhones.

Until now.

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YubiKey 5Ci

YubiKey 5Ci

Today sees Yubico, the leading provider of hardware authentication security keys, unveil the YubiKey 5Ci, the world's first security key that features both USB-C and Lightning connectors on a single device. 

This combination of connectors makes the YubiKey 5Ci the ideal security key for both consumers or enterprise users looking for an authentication tool that will work with iOS, Android, MacOS, and Windows devices.

The USB-C port makes the YubiKey 5Ci compatible with nearly every USB-C equipped laptop or mobile device (except the iPad Pro with USB-C, which according to Yubico, is not currently supported), allowing it to work with hundreds of applications and services listed in the Works with YubiKey catalog today.

But the key is only part of the equation. To work on iOS, it requires compatible apps, and for the launch, three apps work with the YubiKey 5Ci.

Two are password managers: LastPass (requires a premium account) and 1Password (new 1Password customers can get six months of 1Password Families for free here). The final app is the Brave web browser, which allows the YubiKey 5Ci to be used for logging into websites. The list of supported sites includes Twitter.com, Login.gov, GitHub.com, Bitbucket.org, and 1Password.com.

"The YubiKey 5Ci fills a critical gap in the mobile authentication ecosystem," said Jerrod Chong, chief solutions officer, Yubico. "It is the first iOS-friendly security key on the market to offer strong, yet simple authentication over a Lightning connection, while still delivering a unified experience across other mobile, desktop or laptop devices. In an increasingly mobile-first world, where users are not tied to one machine, the YubiKey 5Ci serves an important role as a portable root of trust, proving that users are who they say they are, no matter what device they are on."

The YubiKey 5Ci supports a wide range of protocols –--FIDO2/WebAuthn, FIDO U2F, OTP (one-time-password), PIV (Smart Card), and OpenPGP.

The YubiKey 5Ci is available for purchase from today and retails for $70.

YubiKey 5Ci: USB-C and Lightning Security Key

What are your experiences with security keys such as Yubico's YubiKey or Google's Titan?

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