How Multi-Factor Authentication Protects Against Ransomware Attacks

iQuanti: In a world where ransomware is on the rise, companies need ways to reduce their exposure to potential cyberthreats. Some solutions are more complex than others, but one form of ransomware protection that's relatively easy to implement — especially compared to its effectiveness — is multi-factor authentication.

Below, we'll explore how multi-factor authentication can bolster your firm's defenses against cyberattacks.

What Is Multi-Factor Authentication?

Multi-factor authentication is a security procedure where a user must use multiple independent methods to access a system. For example, an employee may have to enter their username and password (one factor), then enter a confirmation code sent via SMS to their phone (a second factor).

This security method is already used in consumer applications — usually as two-factor authentication. For example, a bank may require users logging in from a new device or location to enter a code sent to them via text message or email.

What Makes Multi-Factor Authentication So Useful?

By requiring multiple independent pieces of information, multi-factor authentication increases the amount of proof a user must provide. It also segregates these forms of proof in case an unauthorized person attempts to access that information.

For example, imagine someone is attempting to access another person's online banking account. They enter the username and password, but perhaps the bank's two-factor authentication requires the user to input a PIN sent to the user's phone.

The unauthorized user may not be able to proceed, despite having the victim's username and password, because they would also need their phone or email.

What's more, in this instance, the victim will discover that someone is attempting to log into their banking information. They can then report this to their bank and/or the proper authorities, and reset their compromised password.

It would work the same way if an unauthorized person were attempting to access a corporate account within your company. Multi-factor authentication may stop them before they reach something critical and, depending on the authentication method, potentially help you find out who this is.

At the same time, multi-factor authentication is fairly convenient relative to the level of security it adds.

For instance, asking an employee to scan their thumbprint after swiping after entering a username and password takes next to no effort. However, it decreases the chances that an unauthorized person gets ahold of anything important.

In fact, such widespread consumer-facing use has made employees more comfortable with this security procedure — after all, they're now likely already using it in their personal lives.

Increase Your Security with Multi-Factor Authentication

Multi-factor authentication is a widespread security method for consumers due to its simplicity.

Yet, since it requires multiple sources of proof, it can stop a lot of ransomware and other threats in their tracks without much effort on an employee's part.

No security solution is perfect, of course. You should pair multi-factor authentication with other security procedures and make sure your employees are well-versed in the basics of information security. But multi-factor authentication is a relatively simple way to vastly increase your cybersecurity.

Source: iQuanti, Inc.