Nov 1, 2018

Two-factor authentication (2FA) - convenient and secure

One of the security solutions is a security system built on a zero knowledge foundation - such as tokenless two-factor authentication (2FA).
The immergence of 2FA has allowed businesses to empower their staff when it comes to corporate security, and acts as an extra layer of protection. It requires not only a user-name and password, but also something that only the user has on them (i.e. a physical token) to generate a one-time passcode (OTP). With digital crime and Internet fraud an increasing concern, such methods of authentication have become increasingly prevalent.
However, whilst physical 2FA tokens can be easy to lose and expensive for companies to distribute and maintain, tokenless 2FA solutions just need an existing device, such as a phone or tablet, to provide employees with passcodes via e-mail, SMS or an app. In other words, workers don't need to worry about carrying around an additional physical token; they can just make use of the devices they already have.
Yet this is not just a convenience issue; this is a security one too. 2FA doesn't necessarily guarantee bullet-proof security as any manufacturer that creates cryptographic keys, also known as a seed records, must trust that their copy of the keys can't be accessed by hackers. This is why a zero knowledge foundation is important, as it makes it impossible for malware on a smartphone to capture the seed records because they are split into two parts: one created on the client server and one generated using characteristics of the mobile device.