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Multi-Factor Authentication: How to Secure Your Accounts with Duo

Two-factor authentication with fingerprint touch identification

Passwords aren’t enough anymore.

No matter how many warnings you might hear about using strong passwords or not reusing passwords, the vast majority of people are still using weak passwords and poor password etiquette that make them an easy target for hackers.

It’s no surprise then that millions of passwords are stolen every day, and 61% of data breaches involve the use of credentials.

If you can’t rely on passwords anymore, how can you secure your accounts and keep your business and employees safe?

That’s where multi-factor authentication comes in.

What is multi-factor authentication?

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds extra layers of security by requiring you to provide multiple different types of information to access your accounts. There are three basic types of authentication factors:

  • Something You Know: Like passwords, PIN numbers, or security questions
  • Something You Have: Like your phone, or a keycard
  • Something You Are: Like a fingerprint, or facial recognition

Multi-factor authentication vs. two-factor authentication

While sometimes used interchangeably, two-factor authentication (2FA) is a type of multi-factor authentication that uses exactly two different authentication factors. MFA uses two or more authentication factors.

So, all two-factor authentication is multi-factor authentication, but some multi-factor authentication may be more robust than just two factors.

Why do you need multi-factor authentication?

Relying on passwords alone puts yourself, your business, and your sensitive data at risk. Even if you’re using strong passwords and following safe computing habits, you can still fall victim to phishing emails, viruses, or malware that could expose your credentials without you even knowing it!

With many more people working from home, the need for MFA is greater now than ever. Before, companies could rely on locked doors or keycards–in addition to passwords–to prevent access to their physical office equipment. (That’s old-school two-factor authentication!) Now, employees are accessing work documents via the cloud, often from personal devices.

Enabling MFA will keep hackers out of your accounts, even if they have your password. This extra layer of security is essential to keeping yourself and your business safe. According to Microsoft, multi-factor authentication can block over 99.9% of account compromise attacks.

Example of Multi-Factor Authentication with Duo

At EZComputer Solutions, we use a multi-factor authentication tool called Duo. It makes it simple and easy to secure all your accounts. Here’s an example of how it works.

To add security for your remote workforce, your company could use Duo to ensure no one can remotely log into your company computers without authorization.

You would install a simple app on your smartphone

Screenshot of Duo Mobile download page in App Store
Download the Duo Mobile app

When you log into your computer, you enter your password, as usual.

Then, the Duo app sends a push notification to your phone. You click a single button, and your computer finishes logging you in.

Duo 2FA push notification example on phone
Duo push notification on mobile phone. Source

Duo is also compatible with Apple Watch. It can send a push notification to your watch, so you don’t even have to touch your phone to log in to your computer.

Duo 2FA push notification example on Apple Watch
Duo push notification on Apple watch. Source

Duo makes MFA simple for you, and it keeps your computer secure because a hacker couldn’t get into it without access to both your password AND your phone at the same time.

Get Started with Multi-Factor Authentication Today

Don’t keep relying on passwords alone to keep you safe.

Our team at EZComputer Solutions understands the cybersecurity needs of small businesses and can recommend a security package to fit your needs and budget.

Contact us today, and let’s talk about how multi-factor authentication with Duo can make your business more secure.