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A security token is an electronic software access and identity verification device used in lieu of or with an authentication password. Security token technology is based on two-factor or multifactor authorization.
Security token is also known as Universal Serial Bus (USB) token, cryptographic token, hardware token, hard token, authentication token or key fob.
The core security token design feature is a built-in display screen requesting access via authentication code or personal identification number (PIN). Some security tokens store digital signatures, biometric data, fingerprints or cryptographic keys. Advanced security tokens include USB tokens, Bluetooth tokens, Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) mobile phones and PC/smart cards.
The security token's small design allows transport via keychain, pocket or purse.
The three main security token types are as follows: