The consistent reports of more data breaches showcase the persistence and patience of hackers. However, it also reveals corporate missteps in the allocation of resources. “Much of today’s security spend is going towards perimeter defense products such as firewalls, proxies, and anti-malware, but the most common cause of today’s high-profile data breaches is stolen usernames and passwords.” It’s time to consider the security solution that will protect those important credentials from breach: multifactor authentication (MFA).
How can MFA help me protect my corporate data?
You can use MFA to mitigate the risks of attack—as long as it’s deployed universally across the corporation. CIO.com makes a strong argument for implementing adaptive MFA; “To be effective, MFA must be deployed everywhere: across both end and privileged users, and across all enterprise resources—cloud and on-premises applications, VPNs, endpoints, server logins, and privilege escalation.”
Cloud-based MFA integration can quickly and easily protect a variety of corporate applications, as the MFA simply stands in front of all network activity, encompassing both homegrown and out-of-the-box software.
MFA is a must for employees. For most users in today’s digital world, the sheer volume of accounts is boggling. A 2014 Centrify study noted that 40% of consumers in the U.S. and the U.K. create more than 50 account profiles a year. It’s tempting to use standard “password keeper” apps to curate all the information. The problem is that the software is only as good as the initial password that generates all others.
How can we increase adoption of MFA in corporations?
In the past, security measures haven’t always been easy to use and implement.
Consider that the problem with MFA adoption is not in the security itself, but of the pain of integration within the day-to-day work processes. Rather, users would be more willing to use MFA if it is actually an adaptive MFA process, that recognizes instances of patterned behavior.
For example, adaptive MFA would check that a user is logging in on a network device, during regular business hours, and within the proper location. If all of those factors authenticate, then the login might only require a password.
But if the user is attempting a login on a non-network device or at a different location, the system would request a second verification method. It is these instances of challenges that allow the user to understand that the system recognizes out-of-the-ordinary logins, and can improve adoption rates.
Give users choices to authenticate
Choices within the adaptive MFA process include hardware or soft tokens, SMS or text message, phone calls, emails, security questions, or biometric authentication. By allowing users to pick which method they prefer, you cater to all: from to the tech-savvy to the tech-averse. Regardless, it allows your corporation to bump up the adoption rate of MFA because of its flexibility.
If you’re interested, read more from The Next Web about 5 authentication methods putting passwords to shame or check out the technology behind the RecordVault at Cyber Solutions Technologies.
The bottom line for MFA
No matter which MFA solution you choose, be sure that it is easy to deploy, use, manage and maintain. You should also have a comprehensive list of options for authentication for a variety of users. All of these factors will add up to a win-win with MFA for both corporations and end users.