What is 2-factor authentication?

What is 2 factor authentication?

Two-factor authentication (2FA) is a security process in which the user needs to provide two different authentication factors to verify their identity and gain access to a specific application.  This is used to protects a user's credentials and the sensitive information the user can access. 2 factor authentication provides a much higher level of assurance as multi-factor authentication (MFA) is an additional security layer which helps to address the vulnerabilities of a password-only approach. Businesses are no longer able to ignore this as 2FA can greatly lower the likelihood of phishing attacks and identity theft. MFA means hackers are unable to compromise log-ins with usernames and password alone. Even if a bad actor is able to get hold of your password, they won’t be able to access your private applications unless they also have your phone or security key.

Why is there a need for 2 factor authentication?

Passwords alone are a very weak form of authentication. What makes this worse is that many internet users do not update passwords on a regular basis. Unfortunately living in the digital age, passwords can be easily hijacked by cyber criminals. This can happen through sheer brute force or by simple phishing attacks.

2 factor authentication is an extra layer of security which can help combat the challenge of weak or recycled passwords. To protect your business-critical data you must have a robust and layered approach to security. Having a 1 factor approach to accessing systems leaves your business vulnerable to password theft attacks. You are essentially the ‘easy win’ or low hanging fruit for online criminals.

“60 percent of small companies go out of business within six months of a cyber-attack.” 
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