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Why your business should implement multifactor authentication

In July 2018, Timehop, a small cloud-based company that retrieves old social media content for users as part of what it calls the “digital nostalgia” category, reported that its database of 21 million users had been breached. About 4.7 million records were stolen with information that included user names, email addresses, and phone numbers.

According to the company’s incident response team, the cause of the security breach could be traced to the fact that there was no multifactor authentication required to access its cloud computing environment. The company has since updated its cybersecurity protocols to include multifactor authentication, but that is little comfort to the 4.7 million users who have had their sensitive personal information stolen by unknown individuals.

While the benefits of cloud computing for enterprises, employees, and customers in terms of convenience, performance, scalability, and overall cost can’t be denied, those benefits come with a certain amount of inherent risk. To mitigate that risk, all stakeholders should embrace a corresponding level of cybersecurity procedures and protocols, including multifactor authentication.

SEE: Cybersecurity strategy research: Common tactics, issues with implementation, and effectiveness (Tech Pro Research)

Multifactor authentication and cloud computing

An August 2018 survey conducted by Decision Analyst, reports that 63% of respondents experience significant resistance from their employees when they try to implement a multifactor authentication protocol for accessing cloud computing services. This attitude toward what should be a basic and minimal cybersecurity practice must change.

When considered collectively, enterprises around the world are losing billions upon billions of dollars to coordinated, concentrated, and targeted attacks on existing security vulnerabilities. This drain of resources can’t be sustained indefinitely, and steps, regardless of sentiments surrounding inconvenience, must be taken to reduce the effectiveness of criminal cybersecurity attacks at all levels of the enterprise.

SEE: How to set up two-factor authentication for your favorite platforms and services (free TechRepublic PDF)

In addition to multifactor authentication, enterprises taking advantage of cloud computing services should be implementing procedures for data encryption, data classification, credential verification, biometric access control, and more. Every enterprise with cloud computing exposure should have at the very least a detailed policy that outlines security procedures and protocols.

Tech Pro Research, TechRepublic’s premium sister site, offers a Cloud computing policy that provides a framework for establishing a complete cybersecurity profile for your enterprise. It’s a good place to start. Businesses can’t keep doing what they’ve been doing with regard to security and bearing the consequences. It’s time they do something about it.

Your thoughts

Has your enterprise implemented multifactor authentication? Share your experiences with fellow TechRepublic members in the discussion thread below.


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About Pralay Das

Pralay Das
Hi, My name is Pralay Das. I am an Ethical Hacker. I am doing Diploma an in Computer Science. My dream is to become penetration tester and then share my knowledge with everyone. I created a blog which I named as “TCR-Security” (The Cyber Researcher) in which will upload articles regarding Technology, Gadget Reviews, and Cyber Security.

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