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Cloud MFA (Multi-Factor Authentication)

Often referred to as two-factor authentication (or 2FA), cloud multi-factor authentication is a critical and vital tool that fights against identity theft and unauthorized access to company resources. Multi-factor authentication adds a second or third factor to the login process on all your company resources including apps, services, servers, etc.

It is a secure way to verify user identity, which is more secure than the classic username-password authentication. MFA incorporates a password and 1-2 additional authentication factors.

MFA plays a crucial role Identity and Access Management (IAM), and is often implemented within Single-Sign-On (SSO) solution. In general, MFA may include any two of the following:

  • Something that you know, e.g., a password.
  • Something that you have, e.g., a device.
  • Something that you are, e.g., your fingerprint.

With MFA enabled in the IAM service, when a user signs in to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, they are prompted for their user’s name and password; the first factor (something that they know). The user is then prompted to provide a second verification code from a registered MFA device, which becomes the second factor (something that they have). Any two factors can work together, enabling an extra layer of security to verify the user’s identity and complete the sign-in process.

What Are The Benefits of Multi-Factor Authentication?

MFA protect your user accounts and company data with a wide-array of MFA verification methods such as push notifications, Google Authenticator, phishing-resistant, and so on. Other benefits of MFA include:

  • It protects sensitive information: Users are the primary risk for a network, so multi-factor authentication relieves user and IT administrators by protecting data from getting into the hands of relentless hackers.
  • It is always secure: In case, a hacker has somehow acquired a user’s password to a system, they cannot gain access, as they won’t have the second factor (which is generally in the user’s possession.
  • No more lost devices: Device-based multi-factor authentication (and paired with full-disk encryption) ensures that lost devices do not convert in to a compromised access or tempered data.

When implemented correctly, under the supervision of expert professional, multi-factor authentication can significantly benefit IT security without causing much challenges to the end-user.

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