Two Factor Authentication Is Sometimes Confused with Other Types of Security Measures

Two factor authentication (2FA) is sometimes confused with other electronic security measures used by companies. For instance, a user is asked to enter challenge questions when they access the resource for the first time. This kind of security system is not 2FA. While challenge questions do help improve security, anyone who knows the answers to the questions can gain access to the resource. Rather 2FA is a type of authentication method which requires users to supply something they have with something they know, like their user name and password.

The Key Part of Two Factor Authentication Is Something Users Possess or Own

The key component to two factor authentication is the piece that has to do with providing users with something they possess or own. Oftentimes this part of 2FA is provided through the use of a digital certificate. The digital certificate contains the data necessary to allow the user to proceed with logging into the resource. The digital certificate may be contained on the user’s hard drive in their computer, placed on a digi-token or embedded into a microchip on their employee ID card.