With standard security procedures (especially online) only requiring a simple username and password, it has become increasingly easy for cyber criminals to gain access to a user's private data such as personal and financial details and then use that information to commit fraudulent acts, generally of a financial nature.
How This Works
Using a username and password together with a piece of information that only the user knows makes it harder for potential intruders to gain access and steal that person's personal data or identity.
Historically, two-factor authentication is not a new concept but its use has become far more prevalent with the digital age we now live in. As recently as February 2011 Google announced two factor authentication, online for their users, followed by MSN and Yahoo.
Many people probably do not know this type of security process is called Two-Factor Authentication and likely do not even think about it when using hardware tokens, issued by their bank to use with their card and a Personal Identification Number when looking to complete Internet Banking transactions. Simply they are utilising the benefits of this type of multi factor Authentication - i.e. "what they have" AND "what they know".
Using a Two Factor Authentication process can help to lower the number of cases of identity theft on the Internet, as well as phishing via email, because the criminal would need more than just the users name and password details.
The downside to this security process is that new hardware tokens (in the form of key fobs or card readers) need to be ordered, then issued and this can cause slowdowns and problems for a company's customers wanting and waiting to gain access to their own private data via this authentication procedure. The tokens are also usually small and easily lost so causing more problems for everyone when customers call in requesting new ones.
SecurEnvoy looks to resolve this problem with Two Factor Authentication by utilizing mobile phone SMS technology. With over 5 billion mobile phones in use, turning a phone into an authentication device quickly solves the need and additional cost and delays of sending out hardware tokens.
Using Two Factor Authentication without tokens is called Tokenless Authentication, patented by SecurEnvoy. This type of authentication can be considered faster, quicker and cheaper to set up and maintain across many networks.