The W3C standards committee has developed a new Web Authentication alternative to passwords where users are pre-registered & later verified using FIDO approved devices such as biometrics, one-time PIN from smartphone, etc.

Web Authentication — API for accessing Public Key Credentials

This specification defines an API enabling the creation and use of strong, attested, scoped, public key-based credentials by web applications, for the purpose of strongly authenticating users. Conceptually, one or more public key credentials, each scoped to a given WebAuthn Relying Party, are created and stored on an authenticator by the user agent in conjunction with the web application. The user agent mediates access to public key credentials in order to preserve user privacy. Authenticators are responsible for ensuring that no operation is performed without user consent. Authenticators provide cryptographic proof of their properties to Relying Parties via attestation. This specification also describes the functional model for WebAuthn conformant authenticators, including their signature and attestation functionality.

Relying Parties employ the Web Authentication API during two distinct, but related, ceremonies involving a user. The first is Registration, where a public key credential is created on an authenticator, and associated by a Relying Party with the present user’s account (the account MAY already exist or MAY be created at this time). The second is Authentication, where the Relying Party is presented with an Authentication Assertion proving the presence and consent of the user who registered the public key credential. Functionally, the Web Authentication API comprises a PublicKeyCredential which extends the Credential Management API [CREDENTIAL-MANAGEMENT-1], and infrastructure which allows those credentials to be used with navigator.credentials.create() and navigator.credentials.get(). The former is used during Registration, and the latter during Authentication.