What Are The Differences Between Two-Step and Two-Factor Authentication?

If you find that you and your business spend most of your time online, cybersecurity should be your top priority. If you find that your information is vulnerable, you should consider taking a look at your authentication process. Two of the most commonly used authentication options for cybersecurity are two-step and two-factor authentications.

You’re probably finding yourself thinking, “What’s are authentication tools and what is the difference between the two?” Two-step and two-factor authentication are often used interchangeably, however, there are slight differences.

What is two-step authentication?

Two-step authentication is a process that requires a user to have a single login, such as a password, as well as an additional similar type of login that is sent directly to the user. For example, you may have a password for your first step and then receive a one-use code on your cell phone or to your email as the second step. A two-step authentication just adds as extra step in verifying your identity and keeping your information more secure. However, this is not to be meant as a means of keeping hackers out.

What is two-factor authentication?

Two-factor authentication, often referred to as multi-factor authentication is considered significantly more secure than the aforementioned two-step authentication. Two-factor requires the user to have two different types of information to verify the user’s identity.  For example, your authentication could be a combination of a fingerprint as well as a password or code. Since a two-factor authentication requires these types of information, it would require a hacker a great deal of effort to obtain your information.

So, what’s the difference?

Bottomline: Every two-factor authentication is a two-step authentication but the opposite is untrue. It’s important to research the security measures available and make sure you’re using the authentication process that is right for your business.

As always, ECMSI offers top-of-the-line layered security to keep their partners and their customers safe. Our security suite provides the skilled IT resources, domain expertise, centralized monitoring and management facilities, and proactive approach to ensuring the protection of your desktops and laptops against the ever-present threat of viruses, spam, and malware attacks. Call today (330) 750-1428 or visit our website at www.ecmsi.com/security!