Seven Benefits of Multi-Factor Authentication

Hackers are using increasingly sophisticated tactics to gain data access. Email phishing, keylogging, brute force attacks and social engineering are among the variety of ways to gain access credentials.
Multi-Factor Authentication
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Hackers are using increasingly sophisticated tactics to gain data access. Email phishing, keylogging, brute force attacks and social engineering are among the variety of ways that hackers seek to gain access credentials. It is easy to see why Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) plays a crucial role in cybersecurity.  Because of its layered nature, it creates additional ‘hurdles’ that hackers will have to leap through to verify their identity. MFA protects information from possible hacks, keeps an eye on employee accounts, and scares hackers away. Here are the specific ways that MFA benefits the cybersecurity posture of your organization.


1. MFA increases security with third parties and organizations

Large corporations are likely to have multiple third parties accessing their systems for a variety of reasons. Depending on organizational size, the volume of individuals coursing through your data systems could be in the hundreds or thousands at any given time which would be challenging for any system. The additional form of authentication whether through biometric, mobile, etc. creates a layered defense system and gives you greater control over who gets to access the most sensitive data in your organization.


2. Adds next-level security for remote work

Users working remotely are particularly vulnerable as quite often, cybercriminals try to gain access to a system concurrently. Fortunately, MFA makes their malicious endeavors more difficult for them. When used in conjunction with SSO solutions, MFAs can block such users and even report such threats and the IT department gets a timely notification to block such users immediately.

Password theft via phishing, keylogging, and pharming have raised concerns for organizations globally, especially in an open network. MFA addresses these concerns because it prompts users to confirm via a secondary form of authentication even if the password is stolen, thus helping prevent any data loss.


3. Offers more choices to meet your security needs

MFA is made up of three common credentials: What the user knows (password), what the user has (security token), and who the user is (secure biometric verification). A prerequisite for multi-factor authentication is the use of at least two of these credentials. As to which ones and the breadth of access for both parties can be adjusted to meet the security and logistical requirements of a company. Also, simple solutions like adaptive MFA, single-sign-on (SSO), and push notification can be easily implemented.


4. MFA helps meet regulatory requirements

According to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) all access to Electronic Protected Health Information (ePHI) is for authorized personnel alone. By implementing technical safeguards preventing unauthorized access, like MFA, this compliance requirement is met. In the same vein, various government institutions have to adhere to the security policy of the Criminal Justice Information Services (CJIS) division of the FBI which requires them to implement multi-factor authentication. This security protocol simultaneously protects an organization and enables it to meet external requirements.


5. Minimizes password risks

Statistics show that over 65% of accounts use duplicated passwords – a particularly troubling figure especially if a bad agent finds the password for an employee’s email account because there’s a 65% chance that they’ve also found the password for sensitive information deeper in the network. Having a password security policy like requiring complex passwords of a certain length, including special alpha-numeric combinations is good practice. But multi-factor authentication is still best practice.


6. It provides more layers of security than 2FA

MFA provides more layers of security than two-factor authentication (2FA). It is an organization’s prerogative to mandate that both employees and consumers to verify their credibility via password, time-based One Time Password (OTP), and Google Authenticator. This ensures the veracity of the end-user.

These multiple layers of security ensure that users looking to access data are who they purportedly are. Even if hackers succeed in stealing one credential, they will still be pressed to verify their identity in another way. It is wise for companies that store consumers’ details should opt for more than two authentications to help them maintain data integrity and build and maintain consumer trust in the process.


7. Ease of implementation

By nature, multi-factor authentication is non-invasive. The virtual space of an organization or institution is not affected by it. Also, the intuitive user experience of MFA allows it to be adopted by the consumer with almost next to no effort.



By the simple fact that hackers are made to have a harder time cracking the 2FA or MFA code because of different security layers to verify the identity of the user seeking to gain access, time-based One-Time-Passwords, Google Authenticator, and others, MFA is an effective tool for cybersecurity. Additionally, it should be considered part of due diligence on the part of the user to make the task for hackers even more difficult by using complex passwords, particularly if MFA is used with a single-sign-on solution.


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