For logging in to an online account or a website, the end users use the username and password combination. Here, the password, being a single authentication factor, is used to authenticate a user. As soon as you enter the correct password of an account, the authentication server verifies your identity and ensures that you are an authentic user. But, what if someone else knows and enters the valid secret password of your account. In that situation, the server will grant him access to the account.
This is the major drawback of using just password in the login procedure for authentication. In fact, the password is not highly secure and can be easily compromised by the attackers. Therefore, it is beneficial for all the end users to move ahead of just password-only verification and use an additional security layer, so that if the first layer gets compromised, then the second one can keep the hackers away from your online account and sensitive data. The best method that provides the unmatched security is Two Factor Authentication. It protects every account from the wrong hands.
Defining this method and its working
Two Factor Authentication (2FA) is a security method that adds an additional layer in the login process for verifying whether the user is authentic or not. 2FA security method requires two different factors – secret password and a verification code, to verify identity of the user. The verification code, also known as OTP (One Time Passcode), is sent to the registered mobile number of the user, and remains active only for a few seconds. Without providing both these factors, it is not possible even for an authentic end user to access his account.
If an attacker or intruder compromises your secret password, then he needs your registered mobile device as well for receiving unique verification code and gaining access to your online account. The use of two different factors for completing the login procedure successfully makes Two Factor Authentication a super secure solution. Enable it for experiencing better online accounts and data security.
One of the most common examples of Two Factor Authentication security method is cash withdrawal through an ATM using your credit/debit card. For completing the transaction successfully, you need both credit/debit card and a 4-digit PIN. If any one of these is not available with you, then cash withdrawal won’t be possible. In the same way, 2FA secures all your accounts.
Different factors used for the authentication
Knowledge factors (something the user knows) – username, password, PIN.
Possession factors (something the user has) – credit & debit card, mobile phone.
Inherence factors (something the user is) – biometrics like iris, retina, face scan, fingerprint, voice recognition.
Time and Location factors
Frequently increasing malicious activities over the Internet have made it necessary for the end users to use additional security method while logging in to their online accounts. Two Factor Authentication (2FA), also known as Two Step Verification, acts as the best method for providing protection against all sorts of harmful security breaches.