Examples of Two-Factor Authentication & Why They Matter

Two-factor authentication is increasing in popularity throughout all industries, from banking to online gaming. This technology improves security for both businesses and consumers.

What Is Two-Factor Authentication?

Two-factor authentication is a two-step process used to verify a user’s identity. During this process, the user typically provides information, such as a password or pin number, in addition to another factor. The second factor may be an item the user has in his or her possession, or it may be a fingerprint, a voice pattern or another characteristic that is difficult to duplicate.

Two-factor authentication offers many benefits to businesses and individual users alike. Not only does it enhance security, but it also provides you with better peace of mind. In addition, implementing two-factor authentication is a cost-effective security measure.

Examples of Two-Factor Authentication

Some of the most common examples of two-factor authentication include:

  • Banks – Most banks now have two-factor authentication available to their customers. This technology improves the security of the customer’s account, and it reduces the risk of breaches that may impact the bank’s reputation.
  • Google – Google offers two-factor authentication for users with any Google account. Since many people use their Google accounts for more than one purpose, this level of protection is essential. If one of these accounts is compromised, the others are vulnerable as well.
  • PayPal – Since PayPal may be connected to a user’s bank accounts and credit cards, protecting the account is very important. Fortunately, PayPal offers two-factor authentication to all consumers.
  • Steam – The popular gaming platform Steam has also established two-factor authentication for its users. This protects gamers from hacking, fraud and other issues.
  • Enterprise Resource Planning Softwares (ERPs) – An ERP is an enormous resource for any company, providing access to much of the business. For this reason, it must be kept secure. Many of the big-name ERPs have now enabled two-factor authentication in some form.

Now Is the Time to Adopt Two-Factor Authentication

The examples above represent just a small sample of the organizations and companies that now offer or require two-factor authentication. Soon, this technology will be required for every type of login.

Although establishing and using two-factor authentication may be slightly inconvenient for you, it is much more inconvenient for the criminals who hope to break into your accounts. If you aren’t already using this technology to protect yourself or your company, now is the time to start.

Key Takeaways

  • Because of its many benefits, two-factor authentication is increasing in popularity throughout all industries.
  • Some of the most common examples of two-factor authentication include updated security protocols enacted by banks, Google, PayPal, Steam and Enterprise Resource Planning Softwares.
  • Two-factor authentication will soon be mandatory. Now is the time to start using two-factor authentication to protect yourself and/or your company.

3 Things You Need to Know About Two Factor Authentication

We’ve entered an age where security is more important than ever – particularly in the world of business. Each year, the average cost of a data breach rises to record highs with no end in sight. Cyber attacks are becoming more common with each passing day.

In an era where the stakes are this high, techniques like two factor authentication are among the best chances you have of keeping your digital information away from prying eyes. Before you begin to use two factor authentication at your own business, however, there are three key things you should know.

Two Factor Authentication is Absolutely Necessary

The importance of actually using two factor authentication is something that cannot be overstated. Requiring two forms of input to secure an account instead of just one (traditionally, a password) is critical, but what really makes two factor authentication valuable is the fact that it often requires input from two different devices.

The chances of a hacker gaining access to your password are high – getting your password and access to your smartphone to input a code from an SMS text message or app on your phone are much, much lower.

Two Factor Authentication is Annoying… Which is a Very Good Thing

One of the major reasons why more people aren’t using two factor authentication right now is because it is a fairly irritating method of security. The process of signing into an account takes significantly longer when you have to use two different devices to accomplish exactly that.

Keep in mind, however, that this is very much for your benefit. An “annoyingly secure” process for you becomes an “infuriatingly secure” process for a hacker or someone else who wants to do you harm. Plus, every second that you can delay the process of logging in is a second you have to stop a potential problem before it becomes a much larger and more severe one moving forward.

Traditional Authentication is Outdated

In the early days of the Internet, passwords didn’t just work – they worked well. Then, two unfortunate things happened at the same time – traditional authentication became outdated and people started to become complacent. People no longer saw the need to come up with unique passwords for each account, as “secure passwords” with multiple special characters and case sensitivity became too difficult to remember.

But what happens when one of your accounts is compromised? Every other account that uses the same password falls like a house of cards. With two factor authentication, on the other hand, this isn’t something that you have to worry about.

When you consider the fact that passwords now protect more than just email – in business, they could give someone unauthorized access to your entire server with client records, intellectual property and more – something needed to step up and replace traditional authentication for all time. Two factor authentication is absolutely that new technique and if you’re not using it, you need to start today.

Key Takeaways:

  • Two factor authentication is absolutely necessary and it is something you should always use in both your personal and your business lives when it is available.
  • Two factor authentication is annoying by design – it’s supposed to keep hackers at bay.
  • Traditional authentication is far too outdated to rely on in 2017 and beyond.

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