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Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is one of the best defenses against online fraud and identity theft. Although MFA has been around for more than a decade, its usage remains low. According to a 2021 Microsoft report, only 22% of Azure Active Directories users had strong identity authentication. The remaining 78% didn’t have strong identity authentication and were ill-prepared for online attacks.

In 2021, Microsoft prevented over 25.6 billion attacks targeting Azure Directories. The Office 365 Defender blocked over 35.7 billion malicious emails and phishing attacks. But here’s the point, 99% of compromised Microsoft accounts didn’t have multi-factor authentication.

A transparency report by Twitter in 2021 revealed that only 2.3% of Twitter accounts had two-factor authentication. The use of MFA is almost a guaranteed protection against online attacks; yet most organizations don’t use it. Why? Let’s discuss some of the reasons and the solutions.

Security vs. Convenience

Some applications don’t have MFA. And those that have it, don’t come with MFA as the default setting. Users have to make changes themselves, and most don’t do it. Some users also want quick access to their accounts and consider MFA as an inconvenience. For instance, if you don’t have your phone, and you use it to receive a security key for authentication, you can’t access your account. Even so, trading off security for convenience increases your risk of online fraud.

Fear of Losing an Account

Some users encounter a problem accessing their accounts after losing their phone. The best option is to prevent the problem from happening in the first place. Make sure the platforms you use allow you to set up recovery options and offer user support should you need to recover your lost account.

How to Encourage Businesses to Use MFA

Multi-factor authentication concept.MFA is optional, and some people consider it more appropriate for privileged users. However, MFA is necessary for every business. 43% of all data breaches involve small and medium businesses. MFA can help you prevent a cyber-attack that could lead to huge monetary losses.

Microsoft is planning to disable basic authentication in the future. So, businesses using Microsoft products will have to use MFA. The move to make MFA obligatory and not optional could be the quickest way to encourage organizations to use it.

Cyberattacks are increasing every year. And organizations that use MFA have 99% protection from online fraud. It’s up to each business to compare potential loss from cybercrime and the cost of MFA.

 

About United Business Systems

United Business Systems specializes in simplifying the complexity and management of office technology solutions for over 7,800 organizations nationwide. Services include Managed Print, Document Management and IT Services. Products include MFPs, Copiers, Printers and Wide Format Printers. UBS’s headquarters is in Fairfield, NJ with branch offices in Moorestown, NJ, Manasquan, NJ and New York.

For the latest industry trends and technology insights visit UBS’ main Blog page.

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