eBay has updated its mobile apps, and while the Android update is pretty small (it just adds Android Wear support), the iOS update adds a couple of big features: support for Touch ID and a new one time password feature. Both features aim to improve the app’s overall security, and the Touch ID support in particular has long been requested by users. The one time password option will also be coming to the desktop and Android versions of the service.
With the one time password option, users are able to login without using their regular account password. Instead, eBay fires off a text message with a confirmation code to the account owner’s smartphone (assuming it has been setup with the account), and that code is entered to login. The code is one-time-only and won’t work in the future, so even if someone does manage to find it, it won’t matter.
The one time password option isn’t quite like two-factor authentication and is arguably less useful, as it doesn’t require your actual account password at any point and so if someone can get access to the code, they can log in. If someone does request a code, though, it won’t do them any good if they don’t have access to your smartphone, the same as with two-factor.
That aside, there’s also Touch ID support for those with applicable iPhones. Similarly, Touch ID will remove the need to enter an account password by using the owner’s fingerprint for authentication instead. You can get access to both of these new features now by updating the eBay app.