Multi-factor authentication serves a vital function within any organization -securing access to corporate networks, protecting the identities of users, and ensuring that a user is who he claims to be. Yet the recent surge in high-profile security breaches, as well as evolving business environments that require entirely new considerations for access control – like SaaS applications and mobile device management – represents a shift in how trust and control is established and maintained.
New threats, risks, and vulnerabilities as well as evolving business requirements underscore to the need for a strong authentication approach based on control, choice, and future-forward scalability.
Today, organizations are asking:
- Who controls my token data?
- How do I map authentication methods to business risk and the needs of my users?
- Can I centrally manage, control and administer from one platform?
- Am I set up to evolve to address new demands of my business – like Cloud and mobile devices?
- How can I incorporate additional security layers, to help me further fortify against threats?
- And how do I keep it all practical, and cost-effective?
More than ever, customers are looking for authentication software that delivers more – more strength, control, and choice.
Read on to find out how a Fully Trusted Authentication Environment can deliver just that.
What is Two Factor Authentication (2FA)?
Two-factor authentication ensures that a user is who they claim to be. The more factors used to determine a person’s identity, the greater the trust of authenticity.
Two Factor authentication can be achieved using a combination of the following factors:
- something you know – password or PIN
- something you have – token or smart card (two-factor authentication)
- something you are – biometrics, such as a fingerprint (three-factor authentication)
Because multi-factor authentication security requires multiple means of identification at login, it is widely recognized as the most secure software authentication method for authenticating access to data and applications.
How to Strengthen Your Authentication?
SafeNet’s multi-factor authentication software delivers the protection you expect, while enabling customers with broader choice, improved visibility, and the ability to expand into the future. We do this through our Fully Trusted Authentication Environment, which means that you have:
- Better self-control of your data – SafeNet enables customers with the option to create and control their own token data, so there is no reliance on a third-party vendor
- Improved management and visibility – SafeNet’s solutions deliver single-server management, providing full control, simple administration, and reduced cost and staff burden
- Expanded options – SafeNet delivers the broadest choice when it comes to authentication methods – so you can meet the needs of any user and any risk level (hardware or software, certificate-based authentication or traditional one-time-password, on-premise, or into the cloud)
- Future-ready – with new solutions that deliver strong authentication and SSO for cloud applications as well as credentialing for mobile device management
- Painless migrations – SafeNet offers two complete authentication migration bundles that include unique brokering functionality, which alleviates typical migration concerns and headaches.
The Need for Strong Authentication
Strong user authentication has been an increasingly essential component of the security framework — a vital means to ensure that users, no matter where they are, are in fact who they claim to be and are authorized to gain access to business services.
Strong authentication – also known as two-factor authentication —refers to systems that require multiple factors for authentication and use advanced technology, such as secret keys and encryption, to verify a user’s identity. The simplest example of strong authentication is a consumer’s ATM card. This requires something the user has (their card), and something they know (their PIN). Most people wouldn’t want their bank to allow access to their checking account with just one factor. Yet many organizations allow entrance to their valuable VPN, Citrix, and Outlook Web Access resources (often much more valuable than a single personal checking account) with only one factor—often a weak password. Strong authentication enables organizations to strengthen the protection of these vital resources.
While the decision to use strong authentication is clear cut, deciding on an approach is anything but. Today, there are hundreds of options, with each presenting its own specific advantages and tradeoffs.
Considerations for Selecting a Two-Factor Authentication Solution
With the plethora of strong and two factor authentication offerings available today, it is important for organizations to carefully evaluate the available solutions before making a decision on which solution to implement. When choosing a strong authentication solution, organizations should take a number of factors into account. The following are some questions to consider:
- Do I want to protect my internal network from unauthorized access?If so, consider two factor authentication solutions that enable flexible and comprehensive secure network access, both in the office and remotely if needed.
- Do my users need to connect from remote locations?If so, consider portable solutions that enable secure VPN and web access for remote users, and that enable employees to secure their laptops and data while on the road.
- Do my users need to access many password-protected applications?If so, consider solutions that provide single sign-on functionality, either by storing user credentials on the token or by integrating with external single sign-on systems.
- I want my users to digitally sign and encrypt sensitive data or transactions?If so, consider smart-card-based solutions that provide secure onboard PKI key generation and cryptographic operations, as well as mobility for users.
- How sensitive is my business data?The more sensitive the data, the higher the priority on the robustness and security of the solution.
- Do I want to firmly protect data that sits on my users’ PCs and laptops?If so, consider token solutions that integrate with PC security products such as boot protection and disk encryption applications that require the use of a token to boot a computer or decrypt protected data.
- Have I or do I want to implement a secure physical access solution?If so, consider token solutions that enable integration with physical access systems.
Your Easy Path to Migration
SafeNet simplifies the migration process by offering bundled migration packages that enable organizations of any size to seamlessly transition to the Fully Trusted Authentication Environment. These bundles include a unique brokering functionality, which enables two solutions to coexist “side by side” during migration, ensuring continuity and streamlining the deployment process.