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Why two factor authentication is vital for your business and your cybersecurity

It may seem an extreme step to take, but introducing two-factor authentication to your business is vital for 2019.

 

An extra level of security could be the difference between an attempted hack and a severe data breach.

As first glance, it might look like two factor authentication is new for businesses. However, it’s protection that has been around for the past decade. Due to more and more hacking instances and data breaches, it’s becoming a fundamental requirement for many organisations.

Cyber-attacks are becoming more and more frequent, with many more predicted for 2019. Therefore, it’s understandable that businesses are taking extra precautions.

 

What is Two Factor Authentication?

Two factor authentication, is an method where a user is granted access to an account after providing a second level of digital evidence.

These levels of evidence will always start with the password to the account. With the other being a security token, passcode or a piece of biometric information.

This extra level of security ensures that individuals with just a password cannot access the users account. Meaning they can only get access unless they have the linked device.

In most cases, the device linked to the account will be a mobile or tablet. This is particularly effect for remote hackers and general cyber crime.

What are different types of two factor authentication?

A few examples of two factor authentication are…

Hardware tokens:

The oldest form of 2FA. Where a hardware token is used as part of the process. They produce a new number code, and the user must input the code into the website or system. Usually these are found in key fobs or other portable devices.

SMS Text Message:

As previously mentioned, the most common form of 2FA is when the user must directly interact with their linked device. A popular choice is having a text message sent to the device with a one-time passcode.

Push notifications

An advanced and more recent step has been sending a push notification to the linked device, with a simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ option. This has most recently been implemented by Facebook.

Biometric authentication

Primarily used instead of a password when using a mobile device when logging into accounts which involve payments or are linked to sensitive information.

 

The benefits of two factor authentication?

Aside from the obvious extra level of protection, what are some benefits of two factor authentication?

Your security is strengthened

By requiring a secondary piece of evidence, the chances that a hacker can successfully impersonate a user are dramatically reduced. Therefore, even if a criminal has a password to an account, they don’t have the second element to complete the login.

Alerted to Danger

On the reverse side of this, because users accounts would be linked to a device, they will be alerted if unauthorized access is attempted. For instance, if a passcode appears and the user didn’t request it, it shows an attempted breach and can prompt the user to update their details.

Increases productivity and flexibility

When businesses are implementing 2FA into their work life, productivity could see an increase. With 2FA ensuring protection so employees can securely access documents and continue with work with peace of mind. All without putting the company at risk.

 

In conclusion, two factor authentication is fast becoming a choice to quickly increase security. There’s a range of options with many of them not involving time consuming or expensive methods.

If you’re looking to learn more about how to protect your IT network, or general cyber security advice – Get in contact with us on 02920 887 362 or send us an email at info@excellence-it.co.uk

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