It was only a decade or two ago that being secure online simply meant using a strong password. But those days are long gone, and if you really want to protect your data you should use techniques like two-factor authentication (2FA). The only reason people don’t do that more is because it’s inconvenient. The new credit card-sized BeamU, however, is designed to make it as easy as possible to be secure online.
BeamU recently launched on Kickstarter, and has already reached four times its funding goal. It’s a small device that has the same width, length, and approximate thickness as a credit card, so it will easily fit into your wallet. But there is a lot packed into that tiny package, including: an e-ink display, a fingerprint reader, a touch wheel for navigation, an EMV chip like what your credit card has, and a rechargeable battery that’s good for several weeks of use. It can communicate with your devices via BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) 5.0, NFC, or USB 3.0.
All of that hardware means that BeamU can be used for several secure functions. The most important is that it can serve as a FIDO U2F hardware key, which can be used for two-factor authentication on many websites and services. It can also act as an offline password manager, and will automatically enter your credentials when you use your fingerprint. BeamU also has secure flash drive storage for your sensitive files. Finally, other functions like Bluetooth tracking and even simple games are available.
If you want a BeamU, the Kickstarter campaign will be running until May 18th. Early birds can get a single BeamU for $69, and rewards are expected to be delivered in October.