Two Factor Authentication (2FA) Explained

What is 2FA?

In a nutshell, two factor authentication, or 2FA, is an important and increasingly popular means of securing an online account. Here’s a simple definition:

2FA is an extra layer of security applied to a login process. Normally to access an online account, you type in a username and password. With 2FA, you’ll need to provide a second piece of information to prove it’s you.

Why Do We Need 2FA?

Phishers, cyber criminals, online attackers, scammers and hackers are doing everything they can to get access to the inner workings of your business. 2FA helps keep them at bay, protecting your corporate data and processes. They might be able to hack your password and get through your first layer of security but getting through the two factor authentication will be very difficult.


Types of Two Factor Authentication

The second authentication can come in a number of forms, varying in complexity:

– SMS’s: Once the username and password are inputted, you receive a text with a one-time code as a two factor authentication

– Voice Message: Instead of an SMS, your number is dialled and an automated voice message provides a password

– Email: An email is sent to your registered address which has a code that allows you to access your account

– Hardware Fobs: a keyring sized device that gives a new numeric code every 30 seconds, which is entered as authentication

– 2FA App: This is the most popular form of two factor authentication. You download an app to your smart phone which produces a new numeric code every 30 seconds. This code is inputted to provide access to your account.

How Can 2FA Benefit Your Company

– Security: Most business’s around the world are still relying on one layer of login security. When it comes to protecting your important business data, this just doesn’t cut it. 2FA provides the level of security a business should be using

– Increased flexibility: Multiple users are able to log onto a shared system securely

– Early warning: If a hack attempt is being made on your account, depending on the kind of 2FA you use you’ll be alerted to it

Here at Smile IT we feel that 2FA is a no-brainer and should be used by all businesses, from mining corporations to retail. Give us a call if you have any questions on how you can implement it for your business! You can read about a 2FA client success story here.

peter drummond

When he’s not writing tech articles or turning IT startups into established and consistent managed service providers, Peter Drummond can be found kitesurfing on the Gold Coast or hanging out with his family!