Why You Need Two-Factor Authentication for Your Remote Workforce
Primarily when your team works from home, secure login is critical. Discover the many benefits of two-factor authentication.
Security is a growing concern for SMBs worldwide, especially as the novel coronavirus forces increasing numbers of employees to work from home. As they log in from multiple devices, cybersecurity experts encourage companies to add an extra layer of security to protect sensitive data. This protection, known as two-factor identification (2FA), is an extension of the security protocols you may already be using. For instance, in addition to entering a password, employees logging into your network may enter a one-time password (sent to them via text), or some form of biometric identification, such as a fingerprint. Consider why you should adopt 2FA.
Password Theft Is a Constant Threat
Nearly two-thirds of people use the same password for multiple online accounts. The problem with this, of course, is that if hackers crack the code to get into one account, the door is wide open to gain access to the others. Even more alarming, it typically takes a mere six hours to figure out 90% of employee passwords. Therefore, a password alone isn’t enough.
Security Questions Aren’t Infallible
For someone who wants to gain access to your accounts, figuring out the answers you provided to security questions can be surprisingly easy, especially if the culprit is someone you know. Even when you don’t widely share your information, hackers are incredibly adept at searching public records and employing other clandestine strategies to learn essential details about you. However, it is extremely difficult for them to obtain OTPs and other elements of 2FA.
Streamlining Security Is Good For Productivity
Primarily when employees work from home, they are likely to use more than one mobile device to connect with their colleagues and complete assignments. You can adjust the level of authentication needed depending on when, where, and how employees log in. For instance, you can configure the system so that employees have to provide more verification of their identities when logging in from an unfamiliar device or location. Customizing the level of authentication cuts down on frustration during typical logins, but protects you when your network detects off-the-grid login patterns.
2FA Protects Against Identity Theft
In today’s high-tech world, data is among the most highly-valued commodities, which has led to unprecedented rates of identity theft. In 2018, the Federal Trade Commission received 3 million reports of fraud and identity theft. Two-factor authentication prevents hackers from having easy access to your accounts that contain personal information such as your date of birth, or even the city you were born in.
Large Corporations Aren’t the Only Targets for Hackers
Most people associate data breaches with large financial institutions and other well-known corporations. Small businesses, however, are not immune to cyberattacks. Cybercriminals direct 43% of their misdeeds at small businesses. Within the last year, more than half of small businesses dealt with a data breach. Since the consequences can be dire enough to halt operations entirely, enterprises of all sizes need to do everything possible to fortify their networks.
Cyberattacks Go Beyond Data Breaches
When your company’s network is hacked, the idea of online perpetrators stealing your data is bad enough. But their nefarious acts often go much further, and can include destroying, data, commandeering servers to distribute malware and spam, and even altering programs and services, all of which can have a detrimental impact on your business in a short time.
2FA Is Easier to Incorporate Than You Might Think
Two-factor identification sounds more complicated than it is. If your employees engage in online banking, shopping, social media, and other virtual transactions, then they have likely already encountered multi-level authentication. Therefore, introducing it in the workplace shouldn’t present too many challenges for your staff.
The global impact of the novel coronavirus is causing uncertainty around the world. Adjusting to working remotely poses several challenges. With two-factor authentication, providing a secure way for employees to access critical data doesn’t have to be one of them.