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4 Benefits of Two Factor Authentication

Two Factor authentication is the latest advancement in information security systems. It works on the phenomenon of presenting two or more authentication factors or essentials to gain access into a secured system such as a web portal, computer device or online transaction.

The different factors involved in 2FA are:

• Knowledge factor such as a password, PIN or pattern) 
• Possession factor (ATM card, Hard Token, USB Token, mobile phone , smart card etc)
• Inherence factor (biometric characteristic, such as image, retina, or fingerprint)

Using keyloggers, phishing attacks, viruses etc it is quite easy to steal users credentials. In such a scenario, Two factor authentication has emerged as an effective information security solution to prevent such attacks and help in countering hacking attacks and identity theft effectively. 

 Some of the major benefits of 2FA include: 

 1. Improved Security 

Since a password is more likely to be lost or forgotten, many people remember them by writing down therefore exposing them to hackers. 2FA effectively deals with this problem by providing a unique OTP (one time password) for every transaction or log in attempt. With 2 factor authentication you are least bothered about the first factor (password) as the second factor (OTP) ensures a strong line of defense.

 2. Reduced Data Theft 

According to a research by ‘Javelin Strategy & Research'; in 2012, 12.6 million people suffered identity theft.

Identity theft has become a serious issue in last few years. Through ID theft, a thief can use your name to break into your accounts and can make huge purchases, thereafter leaving a ton of debt for you to pay. 

2FA is one of the most effective ways of reducing cyber crimes such as identity theft, hacking and phishing. RBI has already instructed banks and financial institutions to offer 2 factor authentication to customers. Banks including HDFC, Axis Bank and Union Bank have featured 2FA on their online transactions. Customers need to activate it for their online transactions that involve the use of credit card or debit card. 

Once activated, the 3D secured payment gateway demands an OTP to complete the transaction and this unique OTP is sent only to the registered mobile of the user. Since only the user possesses the device, the risks of hackers using your credit card details are reduced. 

3. Increased flexibility and productivity 

2FA allows different users to securely log in or gain access into a shared system or database. 
Users can also access the company's server through their mobiles, USB Tokens, Hard Tokens etc. 

With 2 factor authentication, more and more companies are allowing their employees to work remotely. Since employees are able to access systems and critical work on the go, the productivity levels increase significantly. 2 FA with SSL VPN is one of the most popular security solutions present today.

 4. Reducing operational costs 

2FA also helps companies cut down their operational costs. With this reliable information security solution, the employees can access databases, servers and web portals securely from their devices. All they need to do is to install One Time Password generation software into their phones. This software generates the OTP and is in time sync with the server.

As the most confidential information of your company is on the stake, make sure you hire only a trusted and renowned information security consultant or buy 2FA solutions from a trusted information security provider.
 

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