Why You Want Two-Factor Authentication

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If you have been recently following the cybersecurity trend on news sources and tech websites, you likely have heard the phrase “two-factor authentication.” This method of double-checking your identity before granting access to an account or webpage is becoming more and more commonly used in the cyber community. According to TechTarget, two-factor authentication is ” security process in which the user provides two means of identification from separate categories of credentials.” The two means of identification is traditionally some sort of code and a physical item. A good example of two-factor authentication is your credit card. If you want to make a purchase using this card, you must present the card and enter a PIN.

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For online accounts, however, a physical item like a card isn’t available. This portion of two-factor authentication is now being swapped out for a text or email code or link that is to be entered or clicked in order to verify your identification. For example, if you get a new computer and you want to log into your Gmail account, you will not be able to unless you have entered the correct password and text-verified a code sent to your cell phone via SMS. Services such as Google, Facebook, LastPass and Dropbox are all utilizing this style of two-factor verification in order to increase their account holders’ personal security.

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How does this increase your security? By restricting account access unless both means of verification have been successfully completed, this creates a stronger barrier against cyberattackers. This means that if you are not using a strong password, or if a hacker figures out your password, he or she may still be unable to reach your information. Despite having your password, the second layer of authentication is not verified, and he or she therefore cannot access your account.

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If you want to see if your service supports two-factor authentication, simply sign in and check your settings, usually under the “Privacy” category. Make sure that two-factor authentication is enabled, and be sure to have your phone on you in case it must be verified immediately.


 

If you’re looking for more cybersecurity solutions for your business, Heart services may be right for you. Contact us to set up a consultation today.

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