two-factor authentication - Network Security

Fix Your No. 1 IT Security Vulnerability by the End of This Year

Dec 2, 2020

There’s never been a point in our history when our networks have needed more protection from security vulnerability. With recent projections putting the cost of cybercrime at more than $6 trillion annually by 2021, it’s integral that businesses protect themselves from hackers with a layered cybersecurity approach.

Any business that relies on out-of-date cybersecurity tools will quickly find they’re no match for sophisticated modern hackers who continually change their techniques in response to evolving IT security trends.

Fortunately, you don’t need all the latest tools to fight hackers. You just need a thoughtful IT security plan along with common-sense security measures like two-factor authentication. Don’t wait until you’ve been targeted. You can set this up today and go into 2021 confident in your organization’s layered security approach.

Let’s explore how mid-size businesses in Colorado Springs can implement easy-to-use security measures like two-factor authentication across their organization to protect themselves from cybercriminals.

What Is Two-Factor Authentication?

Two-factor authentication is a subset of multi-factor authentication (MFA), a method of security that asks individuals for a password as well as at least one other piece of information when logging into a secure system. Requiring all password logins to be authenticated with a phone call, code or security question helps ensure that intruders are kept out, even if they’ve found a login and password through a data breach or email phishing campaign.

There are several free and paid options available to businesses depending on the size of the company, their needs and a variety of other security requirements.

If your company is already a Microsoft environment, it’s easy to set up 2FA. If you have a Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan or any other enterprise plan, you can enable conditional access policies or Azure AD Identity Protection, customized to the needs of your business.

Google Authenticator is also easy to use since it’s available for free on a variety of platforms, but it’s entirely self-managed.

Amnet’s cybersecurity experts recommend Duo, a scalable, cloud-based option from Cisco that’s easy to deploy in any situation, regardless of your current technology.

How 2FA Provides a Layered Security Approach

Two-factor authentication offers one of the least expensive and most reliable ways for your business to protect sensitive data and other company assets. Along with tools like spam filters, intruder protection and VPNs, two-factor authentication should be considered part of any baseline cybersecurity strategy. It needs to become second nature to your staff as well as any clients or customers who need to access your system. Nine out of 10 individuals surveyed said that using two-factor authentication made them feel that their information was more secure online.

With so many people working from home on insecure home or public networks, two-factor authentication extends your office’s layered security approach, offering enhanced email security which actively protects passwords and safeguards company assets.

Setting up Two-Factor Authentication 

To set up 2FA, your IT team will need to decide how to integrate it with your organization’s existing suite of cybersecurity tools. Non-regulated industries have a bit more freedom to choose where they use it, but common integrations include email and cloud-based apps.

Once you’ve selected a list of programs that 2FA will be used with, you can determine which staff in your organization will be asked to use it. The more people using 2FA, the more robust your cybersecurity.

Depending on existing technology, staff can generate a two-factor code with an app on their phone, answer a security question or receive a text with a randomly generated code.

Let Amnet Help Integrate MFA into Your IT Security Plan 

If your IT team is stretched thin or if you don’t have the expertise to integrate two-factor authentication alone, let Amnet help. We’ve been providing expert cybersecurity advice and assistance to businesses across Colorado since 1998, and we can help you set up, test and scale 2FA so it meets the unique needs of your business. Once we’re on board, we’ll provide everything from administrative assistance to user training to help boost compliance and minimize the learning curve as your staff adjust.

Want to get started on a cybersecurity plan that’s ready for 2021? Contact us today for a complimentary security gap analysis.