FAQ Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) at RRU

At RRU, we care about the security of our data so we’re implementing MFA to protect it.

What options are available for my second factor? And which scenario suits me best?

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is a security measure used by organizations to improve their online security and protect their data.

MFA involves using more than one thing to prove who you are. Typically, the two things are "what you know" like a password, and "what you have" which is something that you carry with you.  Using MFA is much more secure because it is less likely that someone with bad intentions will have both your password and the second method you choose.

Here's what you need to know about why organizations like us use MFA:

Safeguarding both your personal data and the sensitive information of our RRU and our students is paramount. Organizations implement MFA to enhance security and protect against unauthorized access to your accounts and confidential data.

MFA adds an extra layer of protection, ensuring that even if your password is compromised, unauthorized individuals still can't gain access without an additional verification step. This significantly reduces the risk of data breaches and enhances the overall security posture of organizations.

Enhanced security
Protection against unauthorized access
Reduced risk of phishing and credential theft
MFA adds an extra layer of security beyond just your username and password. It is harder for unauthorized individuals to access data or systems if they need to know your password AND have your cell phone or key fob to do so. 

Remote Work and Mobile Access: 
With the rise of remote work and mobile device usage, securing access to corporate resources from various locations and devices is critical. MFA ensures that even when you are not physically in your office, your access is secure. 

User-Friendly Experience: 
Modern MFA solutions are designed to be user-friendly, offering options like push notifications, biometrics, or one-time codes via SMS or mobile apps. This makes it easier for you to use MFA without significantly disrupting your work. Microsoft will soon stop supporting SMS (text) messaging so RRU will offer two options for your second factor: push notifications to the MS Authenticator app or a Security Key/Fob (a little USB stick that you carry around with you).

Adaptive Security
Some MFA systems can adapt their security measures based on the context of the login attempt using access policies. For example, policies could specify that if you're on campus plugged into the network on an RRU device, there's low risk so there's no need to ask for MFA. But if you're trying to access our remote server from a personal computer in Greece, we will ask for MFA to make sure that's really you. Other policies are time-based and may ask you to MFA if you haven't done so in a certain period of time. The goal is to use these policies to manage when you're asked to MFA so that the process is not intrusive but that we remain secure.

Preventing Insider Threats: 
MFA can also be effective in preventing insider threats by adding an additional layer of security for employees and trusted users. It helps ensure that even those with legitimate access are properly authenticated. None of the cybersecurity incidents experienced at RRU over the last two years were deliberately permitted by RRU staff. MFA would have prevented ALL of the cybersecurity incidents that RRU has experienced​ over the past two years.

Cost of Data Breaches: 
Data breaches can be extremely costly in terms of both financial losses and damage to an organization's reputation. MFA reduces the likelihood of breaches, which can save organizations a significant amount of money and prevent long-term damage. 

Scalability: 
MFA solutions can scale with growth. We're implementing MFA starting in February by asking employees to register. Then we'll move on to contractors, then students. Initially, only a small number of applications will be MFA-enabled but we'll add others as we go. 

MFA is important to RRU

We're on it! and we need you on it, too.

Employees: starting in Feb 2024

Contractors (academic and non-academic): starting in March 2024

Students: starting in May 2024

Read about options available for your second factor.

If you are traveling with your mobile device, use the authenticator app, which is designed to work internationally (using the verification code method). All you need is a wifi connection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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