Why is MFA important?
To put it simply, MFA is important because makes it harder for bad actors to gain access to your sensitive data and information. Traditional username and password combinations no longer provide the amount of security necessary to protect from hackers (no matter how many times you update your password). Hackers now have password-cracking software that allows them to try thousands of number and letter combinations until they find the right password and cracking your username is often as simple knowing your email address. Employing several forms of criteria for verifying identity is the best way to stay ahead of cybercriminals and secure your personal information.
What is the difference between Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) and MFA, and which is better?
The difference between MFA and 2FA is exactly what the name suggests. Two-factor authentication relies on two of the above criteria to verify a user’s identity while MFA could involve two or more.
If you have a Gmail account, you are probably familiar with 2FA, as this is Google’s primary method of authentication. Consider what a hacker might have access to if they were able to gain entry to your Google account: calendars, emails, and a host of other apps connected to your Google account. Two-factor authentication provides an extra-layer of protection that is far superior to single-factor authentication (SFA).
Conversely, Microsoft, uses MFA technology and reports that it is effectively able to block 99.9% of cyberattacks. One might conclude that since two is better than one, then three or more must be better than two. In terms of security, they would be correct, but there is evidence to show that some users prefer a more frictionless experience over security. The answer to the debate is that both 2FA and MFA are better than SFA but deciding which is best for your organization depends on what you value more: security or user experience.