Sat. Dec 4th, 2021

Business owners looking to protect their companies against online threats should take a hard look at upgrading their passwords and adding a second protective layer of authentication. This is called Multi-factor authentication or MFA.

These extra layers of protection should not be overlooked to guard your most sensitive data. In fact it has become one of the most effective security measures available. It involves using two or more steps of verification when logging into an account.

The first of line of verification is usually the password. After the correct password has been entered, a second step is initiated. This usually comes in the form of a passcode that can be sent to a filed phone number or email address. This ensures the person entering the password is the same one in control of the account.

In many cases the second, or even third level of authentication, takes the form of a biometric. This can include fingerprints or face ID scans, many now commonly used as part of security on mobile devices.

These added steps can keep hackers at bay. They may guess one’s password but the added protection makes it extremely difficult to penetrate your system.

Many hackers and cyber thieves have sophisticated means to breach the security systems of large corporations. Yet the easiest way for a cyber-criminal to penetrate a data base is through human error.

An unsuspecting employee can click the wrong link on an email. Suddenly the cyber thieves have the person’s log in details. This is a common occurrence and points to the importance of employee education with regards to cyber security.

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Despite the employee’s mistake, it will not be harmful if MFA is in place. The hacker may be able to obtain log-in details, yet they won’t be able to gain access without further steps of verification.

Passcodes sent to particular phone numbers and email addresses, or biometric verification steps, can send the intruder packing and to search for cyber prey elsewhere.

Many employees are of course working from home due to the pandemic. This produces greater risk due to the lack of onsite supervision and the array of personal devices used for work processes.

Hackers are increasingly attempting and succeeding at targeting businesses who have failed to upgrade their protection for remote use. This is where MFA can provide a viable solution.

Implementing MFA is very simple. Setup does not include any external hardware. A managed IT service provider can assist a company in properly originating and implementing the process. It can be easier than most business owners would consider and offers a tested solution with solid results.

Even companies such as Microsoft have made it clear that more businesses should make use of MFA. They believe that 99.9% of security breaches can be halted with this one simple change. It’s a low risk for the business owner and can result in potentially huge long-term savings, especially if it helps to avert a security breach.

In all, Multi-factor authentication is definitely a tried and tested approach and is applicable to all devices. A professional managed service provider can provide technical advice and support for MFA adoption. It can help businesses stop cyber thieves dead in their tracks.

George Rosenthal is a founder and partner with ThrottleNet Inc. ThrottleNet offers an array of technology services and products to help business owners achieve their corporate goals and accelerate business growth. These include cloud computing, custom software, cybersecurity, and outsourced Managed Network Services which helps companies improve their technology uptime and IT

By rahul