Multi Factor Authentication
Multi-Factor Authentication requires end users to provide multiple methods of identification to confirm their identity in order to gain access to corporate resources and applications, as well as perform online transactions. By requiring an additional factor beyond a simple password, multi-factor authentication technology makes it far more difficult to exploit the login process and wreak havoc by stealing corporate, customer or partner data.
The authentication factors that make up a multi-factor authentication request must come from two or more of the following (Claimant being authenticated may be a person, device, service, application or any other security principal that can be authenticated within the system):
– Something a claimant knows (e.g., a personal identification number (PIN)/passphrase or response to a challenge question)
– Something a claimant has (eg, physical token, smartcard or software-based certificate)
– Something a claimant is (e.g., a fingerprint or iris scan)
Before investing in a multi-factor authentication solution, organisations need to take several things into account. A guide to criteria for evaluating and procuring multi-factor authentication products can be found here. That way, when it is time to select the right solution, the organisation will know what multi-factor authentication product features best match the use cases (e.g., Active Directory augmentation, strong identity verification and/or the strengthening of Web server logons) that apply to its environment and authentication needs.