Earlier this year we announced the implementation of Modern authentication for all Microsoft Services. As indicated in that communique, the purpose for its introduction was to strengthen the authentication process and improve the overall security posture of our IT environment.
Security, like many other aspects of life, is a journey, not a destination; part of this journey necessitates the use of another technology known as Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).
Here are the facts
- Passwords are no longer enough to protect your online accounts – No matter how strong/complicated they are to guess or how frequently they are changed
- 80% of data breaches in 2019/2020 were caused by compromised passwords
- 48% of employees share the same passwords in both their personal and work accounts
- As online activity increases, and remote working persists – cybercriminals are exploiting a wider range of attack vectors to gain unauthorized access to online accounts and systems
- The slight inconvenience of extra security steps will go a long way in creating a line of defense between your information and people attempting to gain unauthorized access to your information.
What is Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) adds an additional layer of protection over and above your password to the sign-in process. With MFA enabled, you will be prompted to provide this additional identity verification when accessing any Microsoft application that is hosted on their cloud - such as Email via Outlook, Teams, SharePoint, or OneDrive for Business - after supplying your password.
There are various sign-in verification methods,
- Acknowledge a sign-in notification received via the Microsoft Authenticator mobile app on your phone.
- Use a one-time password code from the Microsoft Authenticator app installed on your phone. Useful in poor cell reception areas.
- Receiving a Microsoft account security code via SMS (similar to a One-Time-PIN [OTP]) or
- Send a security code to an alternate external email address that you have provided.
To simplify sign-ins and avoid SMS delays, we strongly recommend using the Microsoft Authenticator mobile app with the notification method.
How do I sign up and start securing my account?
The process is straightforward and will take you less than 5 minutes to better secure your account. We have made it voluntary at this stage. Starting on the 29th of October 2021, the service will be enforced, and all students will be expected to use MFA. To register today, please install the corresponding Microsoft Authenticator from your mobile store provider using your mobile phone.
- Android - https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.azure.authenticator&hl=en_ZA&gl=US
- IOS - https://apps.apple.com/us/app/microsoft-authenticator/id983156458
Then from a computer browser, visit https://aka.ms/mfasetup and sign in with your work email address and password to follow the step by step onboarding process.
A step by step guide has been attached to assist with the process.
If you require any further assistance, don't hesitate to get in touch with ICS as follows:
Call the Expert Desk on extension 4000 (Internal Callers) or 031 260 4000 (External Callers)
Email Assistance :
Students: email@example.com (please be as detailed as possible with your request).
Issued by : ICS