What is Two-Factor Authentication?
As you probably know very well the modern world is well into the digital age, and with that, we see an increase in cyber-crime and online fraud. I doubt you don't know at least one person, who hasn't had his or her Facebook profile hacked, or lost a Twitter account to hacks. Most people these days are extremely familiar with the value of a strong online security if only to protect their bank accounts. We've all heard about login names, usernames, and passwords, but how many people actually know what Two Factor Authentication is? Some may have heard about it, but if you asked them to explain it to you you'd get some half-answers and speculation, even though most of them use it daily.
You have probably heard of "Two-Factor Authentication" before yourself, but what is it exactly? Well, simply put it's a secondary layer of protection. It's also called "multi-factor authentication" by some people just to confuse you some more.
Since the basic security protocols online usually boil down to a plain username and password it has become progressively easier for cyber-criminals to gain entree to your personal information. Such data can range from private conversations with family, friends, and loved ones to financial records and all kinds of other sensitive data you want to keep out of third-party hands.
How does Two-Factor Authentication work?
Two-Factor Authentication, aka "2FA", is a secondary layer of protection that needs you to type in more than just a password and username to log into your account, but also something that you, and only you, have access to, such as a secret question or some other piece of information. This will make it much harder for attackers to gain access to your personal data.
2FA is not some new piece of technology or a new idea. It has been in use for years and most of you have probably run into it if you have even a modestly active online life. MSN, Yahoo, and Google have all been using Two-Factor Authentication as part of their services for years, with Google introducing the feature all the way back in 2011.
By using Two-Factor Authentication you can protect your private data and lower the chances of identity theft on the Internet, as well as phishing email attacks, and brute force hacking tactics, because the hackers lack the personal information required and can't just rely on working out a password and login.