The digital era in which we now live puts digital assets among the most valuable. As a result, it is essential that we embrace the security features offered by providers. Its not just business services that now benefit from additional security layers. Recently we have seen huge improvements with social media applications offering enterprise-level security protection too. In this article, we are going to explore one simple change that can be made to a number of business and personal accounts that reduce the risk of unauthorised access tenfold.
The power of MFA (Multi-factor authentication) & 2FA (Two-factor authentication).
What is MFA & 2FA? – If we look to Wikipedia we will find it documented as the following.
Multi-factor authentication is an authentication method in which a computer user is granted access only after successfully presenting two or more pieces of evidence (or factors) to an authentication mechanism: knowledge (something the user and only the user knows), possession (something the user and only the user has), and inherence (something the user and only the user is).
Two-factor authentication (also known as 2FA) is a type, or subset, of multi-factor authentication. It is a method of confirming users’ claimed identities by using a combination of two different factors: 1) something they know, 2) something they have, or 3) something they are.
A good example of two-factor authentication is the withdrawing of money from an ATM; only the correct combination of a bank card (something the user possesses) and a PIN (something the user knows) allows the transaction to be carried out.
Two other examples are to supplement a user-controlled password with a one-time password (OTP) or code generated or received by an authenticator (e.g. a security token or smartphone) that only the user possesses.
Two-step verification or two-step authentication is a method of confirming a user’s claimed identity by utilizing something they know (password) and a second factor other than something they have or something they are. An example of a second step is the user repeating back something that was sent to them through an out-of-band mechanism (such as a code sent over SMS), or a number generated by an app that is common to the user and the authentication system.
How do I activate it?
You will normally find access to security options like this in the settings and then security option in your application or service. We have listed common platforms how-tos below:
You will also need an application for authentication should you wish to use code generation and not be dependant upon good wifi or mobile phone signal. We recommend one of the following applications:
How much of a difference does it make?
Enabling MFA or 2FA on your account will prevent 99.9% of attacks on your account. Yes, you heard that right, this simple security feature will prevent a whopping 99.9% of attacks! What are you waiting for get your accounts secured today!
Whilst many services provide MFA or 2FA, you might find that your businesses application do not. At Next2IT we have in-depth knowledge on how best to secure your environments and provide security features like MFA to legacy applications. So get in touch and find out how we can improve your security posture and ensure your most valuable digital assets remain secure.