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The Devil’s Dictionary for IT and IT Security: Two-Factor Authentication
Ryan Arsenault
SEP 21, 2015 15:39 PM
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The Devil’s Dictionary for IT and IT Security: Two-Factor Authentication

by Ryan Arsenault

         

      

 

Access Denied. (But I typed in the credentials right). Access Denied. (You’ve got to be kidding me. One more time.). Access Denied. (That’s it…this computer is going out the window).

Your two-factor authentication seems to be doing its job in keeping out the trespassers (or drawing the ire of your good-natured employees who really are who they say they are!). Which is a good thing if you’ve got patient records stored on your network as a healthcare organization, for example. A breach of HIPAA could net you fines to the tune of millions.

Our Devil’s Dictionary for IT and IT Security, penned by Aberdeen Group VP and Research Fellow of IT Derek Brink, likes to define Two-Factor Authentication as:

A process to provide a higher level of assurance that users trying to gain access to your computing infrastructure are legitimate, on the basis of something they know, something they have, something they are, or something they do (pick any two); the basis for as many support calls when users are unable to gain access and do their work.

As previously mentioned, The Devil’s Dictionary for IT and IT Security first edition, along with five additional entries, was published by Derek Brink a couple of years back. It is his playful twist on The Devil’s Dictionary by Ambrose Bierce, a collection of cynical, satirical “definitions” first published over 100 years ago.

Don’t forget to check out the previous entry in the series, Ransomware, and we’ll continue to publish Derek’s new entries to The Devil’s Dictionary for IT and IT Security periodically here at TechPro Essentials (plus a comprehensive guide at some point including older and these new definitions!).

Your two-factor authentication may be annoying Joe down in Marketing, but it’s only doing its job. Tell Joe next time to stop using the wrong hand on the fingerprint scanner.

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