Nitrokey Pro vs. Yubikey–the battle of new vs. established

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You probably know the pain and frustration of changing passwords frequently. However, that pain may come to an end soon, thanks to the introduction of two U2F keys we will discuss, Nitrokey Pro vs. Yubikey.

Regardless of how frequently you change your passwords, you might not realize that they are a major part of the security problem, especially when you use them alone to authenticate your identity on the internet. If a malicious person decides they want to access your account, they only need to take a few guesses, then gain access to all your information.

Developers are now coming up with various ways to stop this, with the 2FA method (where you get a message or a unique code on your phone) and the U2F (the most secure option).In this article, we take a look at two U2F security systems. They each have their advantages and disadvantages, so we will have a comparison for both. Ultimately, the final decision will be yours, depending on your needs.

What are the differences between Nitrokey Pro and Yubikey? How do they compare?

Model Nitrokey Pro Yubikey
Dimensions (inches) N/A 0.71 x 0.12 x 1.77
Compatible browsers Chrome and any other FIDO compliant site Chrome and any other FIDO compliant site
Open source Yes Yes
  Check here Check here

It is not a surprise that online security continues to dominate discussions in the global communication sector today. After all, studies are increasingly showing that passwords are a very weak way of ensuring your security, as a malicious person on the internet can guess them and access your account.

Nitrokey Pro vs. Yubikey – what are the differences?

Yubikey with greater variety

At first glance, both the Yubikey and Nitrokey Pro may not have stark differences between them. However, the most noticeable feature would be the variety of keys you can get in the Yubikey – totaling up to five. They include Yubikey 5 NFC, 5C, 5 Nano and Security key NFC.On the other hand, the Nitrokey Pro is a specific U2F key that is within the Nitrokey series, and proves to be impressive in its own merit.

Extra feature in the Nitrokey

This GPA assistant is the easiest way to access this feature and use it, as it allows you to edit your user data and generate encryption keys for the smart card. The only problem that s associated with the feature is when you want to work on multiple computers and syncing all the data – however, you can quickly get around the problem if you mainly use one computer for your access.The Yubikey does not have this feature though.

NFC in the Yubikey

Both keys rely on U2F technology, where you use the key to authenticate you alone, and increase your security since no one else can enter your account. However, the Yubikey also includes USB for the desktop experience and NFC for the mobile users, making it easy for you to use it regardless of the device you prefer, which the Nitrokey does not have.

Nitrokey Pro

Nitrokey Pro vs. Yubikey


Both the software and hardware are open source, allowing for independent reviews regarding their security. That means you do not get cases of hidden issues with the security of your data or accounts.

This also makes the integration process easy. It also means that the key will have its own independent functions that are free from the limitations of operating systems, therefore, protecting your data more efficiently.


  • Easy to set up the functions and encryption
  • Great levels of security


  • You cannot work with it on multiple PCs


nitrokey pro vs yubikey

Regardless of the specific Yubikey you use, it is good at working with numerous protocols and platforms.  You only need to register, a very easy process, then tap the key to authenticate your account.The main information that regards the use and any other questions you may have is on the main Yubico website, and you will get everything you need from there as well as the applications it works well with.


  • Great process of setting up, which is really easy
  • Supports many protocols
  • Works very well when using NFC to connect to mobile devices


  • It fails to work with Office 365


While they do have their disadvantages and advantages, the Yubikey still retains the top spot for the ease of use and wide availability, as well as its impressive protocol access.

FAQs about Yubikey vs. Nitrokey Pro

What is the advantage of using U2F keys over 2FA authentication methods?

2FA, especially when it relies on text messages for authentication codes, can also be compromised when a hacker uses social engineering to break into your messages. U2F is the most reliable security system, as it allows you to access multiple accounts without the need of a password or exposure risks, all through the use of one device. Many browsers are turning to the method to authenticate their users.

How do you use a security key?

The use of the key is not as difficult as it may seem on the surface, regardless of what you use. The key will basically work as a second factor authentication, and some keys will allow you to retain your passwords as well.After you log in through the usual process, you insert the key into a USB port briefly, then tap the button.

What happens when the security key gets lost?

The process of setting up the key, especially in U2F, also allows you to select backup methods you can use just in case. For instance, the use of authenticator apps, or OTP (One time password) codes and extra U2F keys.

What if it gets stolen?

The person who steals the key cannot access your account unless they know your password, which the key does not have (it only stores digital certificates, which do not have login information).

Do you need a separate key for each account?

No, U2F keys allow you to use one key for multiple accounts, adding convenience.