keep your passwords strong

Multi-factor Authentication, Better Password Protection

As the prevalence of cybercrime continues to grow, so does the critical need to maintain data security measures. A complex username-password combination is no longer enough to safeguard data, and the nature of human behavior is to blame for the risk associated with passwords. Like most people, you reuse and recycle credentials for convenience purposes.

Multi-factor authentication is a somewhat new, highly effective, and often overlooked method of protecting password security. Within moments of implementing multi-factor authentication, a simple username-password combination will be that much more secure.

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a security enhancement that uses additional information during the login process to verify that the person or entity seeking access is who they say they are. When logging onto a website that requires user identification, you will be asked for a security token after entering username and password credentials. This token could be a unique code received in a text message, created in an app on your mobile device, or an approval button inside an application on your mobile device. It is a simple yet effective measure to increase data security – if one credential is compromised with MFA established, unauthorized users will be unable to meet the additional authentication requirements. Furthermore, multi-factor authentication is an extra layer of defense that can help your organization meet compliance and simplify the login process for your team, keeping productivity high.

Multi-factor authentication uses three categories of credentials for verification:

  1. knowledge factor, something you know – answer to a security question.
  2. possession factor, something you have – a tangible object you have (key fob, sim card, 3-digit CVV credit card code).
  3. An inheritance factor, something you are – biometric data (fingerprint, facial recognition, retina pattern, or voiceprint).

Well, how effective are these added security prompts? A year-long study conducted by Google in conjunction with New York University researchers found that SMS codes sent to recovery phone numbers blocked 100 percent of automated bots, 96 percent of bulk phishing attacks, and 76 percent of targeted attacks, and on-device prompts were even more effective.

There is no such thing as being “too safe” while protecting your information – bad actors have become increasingly strategic with the execution of online attacks. The Digital Shadows Research team published a study in 2020 – revealing over 15 billion stolen credentials from 100,000 data breaches are available on the dark web to cybercriminals. 5 billion, just a third of the overall, are unique with no repeated credential pairs. As the target victims of cybercrime, individuals and organizations need to secure their data before a successful breach occurs. Cyber threat actors may not be after your information specifically, but they do not discriminate once made available.

Our experts at Inventiv Technologies have the knowledge and tools to help protect your organization’s information. Cyber-security services at Inventiv include:

  • Security awareness training.
  • Email security.
  • Cyber-security software.
  • Internet firewall protection.
  • Virus protection solutions.
  • Secure network access.
  • Intrusion detection.
  • Unified threat management.

Contact Inventiv today to learn how we can improve your organization’s cybersecurity.



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