What Is multi-factor authentication or MFA?

6 minute read | What is MFA?

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Get Techy With Us – Ep. 2: What is MFA?

This video series highlights the latest IT trends to provide useful info for businesses

This video dives into what exactly multi-factor authentication (MFA) is, how it works, and why it's one of the tops ways to secure your business information. Hear from one of Fisher's experts, Dana Hamilton.

Fisher’s IT experts weigh in on MFA protocols

1. First, What IS multi-factor authentication or MFA?

MFA, or sometimes called 2-factor-authentication, is a multi-layer security enhancement for logging into your tech account.

2. How does it work?

MFA combines 2 pieces of evidence from the following categories:

  • Something you know (password, pin)
  • Something you have (cell/smart card)
  • Something you are (fingerprint, eye scan)
  • Somewhere that you are (regional, IP address)
  • Something you do (Captcha, picture password)

You must use 2 different categories to enhance security, thus 2 different passwords would not be considered multi-factor.

MFA - Fisher's

3. So why should I use MFA?

Your information and assets are safer when using an additional layer of security. Most all of us would notice if we lost our phone. The bad guys- the ones looking to steal your information and assets – would need to steal both your device and your password to break in. That’s why for example, your phone should be locked and protected with a pin when not in use.

4. When should I use MFA?

Whenever possible! Especially with your most sensitive data: primary email, financial accounts, health records. You may be required to implement MFA to comply with regulatory requirements, such as PCI that protects cardholder data.

5. Why does Fisher’s recommend turning on MFA?

We recognize that information is a key asset to any business and that using the username/password combination is no longer enough to secure those assets. MFA is one of the top 3 things that security experts do to protect their online security.
Some advantages:

Interview Answered By

Dana Hamilton - Circle

DANA HAMILTON

Technical Account Manager

Dana Hamilton, RHIA, CHPS is a Technical Account Manager and Health Information Systems Specialist at Fisher’s Technology.  She has spent her entire career in IT and Health IT industries and is also an Adjunct Professor at BSU in Health IT studies.

For over 30 years, she has held various roles including technician, IT Director, CIO, and HIPAA Compliance Officer.  Dana’s focus has always been to pursue knowledge and share that with her students and clients to ensure an appropriate and complete solution is understood and executed.

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