With continuously increasing hacking incidents on the online accounts and data servers, it has become an essential step for the end users to enhance the level of security without any delay, so that the hackers or intruders can’t gain access to your valuable online accounts. This can be made possible only by adding extra security layers in the login process along with password authentication. You very well know that the passwords have become problematic, they can be easily guessed by the hackers using brute force method or several other hacking techniques. Therefore, you can’t rely no longer only on the passwords to secure your valuable online data and account. Move ahead, and opt for the best and proven security methods before you become the next target of the hackers. 2FA and MFA are such kinds of methods that not only help secure your digital assets, but also alert you with a unique verification code via SMS whenever there is a login activity on your online account.
After going through the above lines, hope you have understand that why to choose 2FA and MFA. Now, the next part of this post is to give you a detailed overview of both these proven security methods along with the difference between them. So, read it to know more.
2FA (Two Factor Authentication), also referred to as Two Step Verification, is a security process of determining whether a user is authorized & authentic to access the requested online account, website, service, application or not. In short, this method adds an extra layer of security in the login procedure to verify identity of the user. With 2FA, the user requires to enter a unique verification code or OTP (something you have) along with the password (something you know) to gain complete access to the account successfully. This unique verification code is sent to the registered mobile number of the user whenever he or someone else enters the valid password associated with that account. The validity of this dynamic unique verification code is only a few seconds, so if someone else manages to get both your secret password and verification code, then also he can’t log in to your account. It is because a different code is sent to the authentic user of that account at every login attempt. In this way 2FA secures your online account from the hackers.
Factors used in Two Factor Authentication security method are:
- The knowledge factor (something you know) – username, password, PIN, a secret question and its answer.
- The possession factor (something you have) – credit & debit card, mobile phone, a unique verification code.
MFA (Multi Factor Authentication), as the name suggests, is a security method that uses multiple or more than two factors in the login process to verify identity of the user. In short, MFA is the combination of 2FA + something you are; the third factor. This method is a little bit complicated in comparison to Two Factor Authentication, as additional factors are included in the login process. Multi Factor Authentication makes it more difficult for an unauthorized user to gain access to the online accounts or other secure websites.
Factors used in Multi Factor Authentication security method are:
- Something you know + something you have
- The inherence factor (something you are) – biometric verification i.e. fingerprint authentication, voice recognition, facial recognition or retinal scanning.
Both 2FA and MFA security methods are used to secure your digital assets from harmful external security threats. But, the basic difference between the two is that the former one uses only two factors whereas the latter includes more than two factors in the login process to prove identity of the user.