IT Takes Two (Factor)

Earlier this month it was reported that several iCloud accounts belonging to Hollywood celebrities were “breached” by hackers, who then shared the celebs’ personal, “sensitive information” across the internet for all to see. Following an investigation, Apple confirmed that there had been no “breach” in its iCloud security services; and in fact, the accounts were personally targeted and broken into due to poor password management. Regardless of who is responsible, all this could have been avoided if a simple 2-Factor Authentication (or 2FA as commonly abbreviated) method for these accounts had been in place.

What is 2-Factor Authentication (2FA)?

When you only have to supply your username and password to gain access to an account, this is considered “single-factor authentication”. 2-Factor Authentication adds another step by requiring you to enter a randomly generated token-key in addition to your usual credentials. The randomly-generated tokens can only be used once, are virtually impossible to steal, and provide you with the confidence of knowing who is actually logging into your systems with a level of identity assurance.

Think about when you use a credit card to pay for something such as gas. The attendant will usually ask you for additional information, such as a zip code, in order to authorize the purchase. This is an example of 2-Factor Authentication that already exists in your daily life.

Should I implement 2-Factor Authentication for my business?

The answer: Yes. Malicious viruses can steal employee credentials if left unchecked and phishing attacks can trick users into supplying login credentials by disguising themselves as legitimate websites. Many employees also choose weak passwords which can often be “cracked”, granting hackers with unauthorized access to company databases, email accounts & other sensitive data.

Requiring your employees to log into company systems with 2FA allows you to prove the identity of your staff from wherever they login, while lowering the chance of a data breach or other malicious attack that can compromise company data. Recent advances in mobile technology have made 2FA cheaper and easier than ever to implement by allowing employees to use existing mobile devices as their method for receiving token-keys. Utilizing an existing device reduces deployment & training costs, and improves the end-user experience of the entire system as well.

Why do we use 2-Factor Authentication at CHIPS Technology Group?

CHIPS is a Managed Services Provider (MSP) meaning we supply clients across multiple industries with various technological needs pertaining to their unique business environment. With an emphasis on industry-leading best practices, it only makes sense to ensure that our employees have the up-most information security measures in place. By implementing 2-Factor Authentication internally at CHIPS, we have supplied both our employees and clients with the peace of mind knowing that even if their credentials are compromised, access remains restricted.

Have questions about 2-Factor Authentication for your business? Feel free to give us a call at: 1-877-378-1993