Why you need to learn two-factor authentication

How much protection do you think passwords provide today to your company’s Web sites, mobile devices and desktop computers? The right answer? Probably not much. Cyber criminals have mastered the art of cracking passwords. And many times, employees trust in passwords that are easy to guess. This leaves your business vulnerable to cyber attacks. Luckily, there’s a solution: two-factor authentication. And, according to a recent story by Biztech Magazine, it’s the simplest way to immediately boost your company’s ability to protect itself from cyber crimes.

Two steps are better than one

As suggested by its name, two-factor authentication requires users to take two different steps to log onto a Web site or device. Usually, employees will have to still use a password but will also need to rely on a second device to gain access to their computers or to important Web sites. For instance, after entering a password, an employee may need to swipe a smart card, insert a token or use a biometric identifier in order to continue. This two-step process instantly upgrades a company’s online security, according to the Biztech story.

Getting started

Once you decide to employ two-factor authentication, you’ll need to take steps to make sure that the transition is an easy one for your employees. And, as Biztech Magazine says, this begins with choosing the right second factor. For instance, tokens might work well if most of your employees work in a central location. If your business depends on workers that are spread across the country, tokens are probably not the best choice. Same for smart cards: These cards generally don’t work with smartphones. If your employees rely on their smartphones to work, smart cards may be the wrong choice for a second factor.

Take your time

If you want your employees to be more comfortable with two-factor authentication, you’ll want to roll out your program slowly. This will give your workers a chance to adjust to the fact that their log-on procedures are going to be going through a fairly significant change. It also provides you with the opportunity to educate your employees about how two-factor authentication works and why it’s so crucial to the company’s security.