Behind the Brain Power | Multi-Factor Authentication

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Date: September 9, 2016 | Topic: Multi-Factor Authentication

In this day and age, stealing passwords and credentials is an easy pastime for hackers. There are a variety of tools and ways that cyber criminals can use to get access to your login credentials. Most of the time you don’t even know it has happened until too late! And because most people use the same password for multiple things, these criminals now have access to all of your accounts. So how do you ensure that no one can steal your passwords?

Enter Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). By using an MFA program, you are required to use at least TWO devices to verify your identity before logging in. Think of it like this – Your online bank account has a lot of valuable information on it. If a hacker were to get access to that account, they would instantly have access to your account number(s), personal information, routing information, and so much more! If you had MFA on your bank account, you would have enter your login credentials AND enter a special code from your phone to access the account. So even if a hacker stole your passwords, they wouldn’t be able to get on your account without physically holding your phone in their hand.

So how does this help businesses? Small-medium businesses are some of the most susceptible to hackers. Did you know that all it takes is a USB drive to steal your login credentials from a locked computer?!? You can check that story out here. By implementing an MFA policy, your protect not only your company but your end-users as well.

Our management team is sharing some of the top reasons businesses need Multi-Factor Authentication. BECA partners with Centrify to make MFA adoption easy. If you are interested in learning more about MFA for your business, give us a call – 404.633.2551 – or send us an email at!

Mike Estep | President: We continue to discuss security while at the same time not trying to think a little differently.  Multi-factor Authentication (MFA) is the new method of preventing breaches and ultimately the first real defense against stolen technical identities.  Requiring a minimum of two devices to login to production equipment is right around the corner. BECA has partnered with Centrify and other key security partners to ready ourselves and our clients for this technology.

If someone guesses or steals your password, but is still required to enter a code or use an authenticator application, it makes it great protection.  To explain multi-factor authentication in a simple way – imagine going to, but before you can access your account you have to get a code from your phone. This is MFA – 2 devices authenticating who you are (computer and phone).

Branden Smith | Vice President: Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is one more tool in preventing your accounts from being hacked.  It requires you to have not only a password, but also sends you a text/uses an App for the second confirmation.  It is not always convenient, but it does provide a much better way (than just a password) to secure your accounts.  When you log into a system that requires MFA you’ll enter your password and then a randomly generated key sent to you via text/APP.  This prevents someone from logging in as you without physical access to your mobile phone.  Some systems are already providing this, but for those that do not, products like Centrify allow you to add MFA protection to any system you log in to.

Sean Barron | Chief Technology Architect: We are constantly hearing in the news about data breaches at one company or another.  One of the most common causes of these frequent data breaches are compromised credentials.  With all of the credentials we have to memorize, it’s very easy to fall into bad password habits and reuse passwords, and/or make them simple so they are easy to remember.  One solution to this challenge is Multi-Factor Authentication.  MFA prevents compromised credentials from being used in a breach as it requires another factor besides just a password, ie. typically a smartphone or token key.

The challenge with many MFA solutions is they only cover one avenue of access: web apps, PC logins, or smartphone logins.  The only way MFA is truly effective is if it is comprehensive across your environment – including all users (end users and privileged users) and all systems (VPN, Cloud, on-prem applications, servers, etc).

BECA, along with our partner Centrify, can help you build a comprehensive Identity perimeter to help you protect your company against compromised credentials.

Robert Rivers | Business Development Director: There are lots of reasons to use Multi-Factor Authentication. There are two main areas that make Multi-Factor Authentication important to me in today’s uses of technology.

  1. Security – Protects against the leading point of attack used in data breaches — compromised credentials. Protects end users and privileged users by stopping threats at multiple points in the cyberthreat chain
  2. Mobile/Remote Worker – Secures access to Apps and Infrastructure across your Hybrid IT environment of cloud, mobile and datacenter

Multi-factor Authentication allow you to use a combination of the following factors.  Something you know (Username, password, PIN or security questions), Something you have (Smartphone, one-time passcode or Smart Card), Something you are (Biometrics, like your fingerprint, retina scans or voice recognition).

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