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    User Authentication Methods & Technologies to Prevent Breach

    Check out our article on user authentication methods that can prevent the next breach. Contact us for more information on ID R&D authentication technologies!

    5 User Authentication Methods that Can Prevent the Next Breach

    Gilad David Maayan

    There is a growing demand for different types of user authentication technologies for both online and in physical systems. The motivation to authenticate users ranges from access control reasons to business development purposes like adding e-commerce elements.

    Organizations need to understand that passwords are not the only way to authenticate users. There is a wide variety of authentication technologies and an even greater range of activities that require authentication methods.

    What Is Authentication?

    Authentication is the process of identifying users that request access to a system, network, or device. Access control often determines user identity according to credentials like username and password. Other authentication technologies like biometrics and authentication apps are also used to authenticate user identity.

    Why Is User Authentication Important?

    User authentication is a method that keeps unauthorized users from accessing sensitive information. For example, User A only has access to relevant information and cannot see the sensitive information of User B.

    Cybercriminals can gain access to a system and steal information when user authentication is not secure. The data breaches companies like Adobe, Equifax, and Yahoo faced are examples of what happens when organizations fail to secure their user authentication.

    Hackers gained access to Yahoo user accounts to steal contacts, calendars and private emails between 2012 and 2016. The Equifax data breach in 2017 exposed credit card data of more than 147 million consumers. Without a secure authentication process, any organization could be at risk.

    5 Common Authentication Types

    Cybercriminals always improve their attacks. As a result, security teams are facing plenty of authentication-related challenges. This is why companies are starting to implement more sophisticated incident response strategies, including authentication as part of the process. The list below reviews some common authentication methods used to secure modern systems.

    1. Password-based authentication

    Passwords are the most common methods of authentication. Passwords can be in the form of a string of letters, numbers, or special characters. To protect yourself you need to create strong passwords that include a combination of all possible options.

    However, passwords are prone to phishing attacks and bad hygiene that weakens effectiveness. An average person has about 25 different online accounts, but only 54% of users use different passwords across their accounts.

    The truth is that there are a lot of passwords to remember. As a result, many people choose convenience over security. Most people use simple passwords instead of creating reliable passwords because they are easier to remember.

    The bottom line is that passwords have a lot of weaknesses and are not sufficient in protecting online information. Hackers can easily guess user credentials by running through all possible combinations until they find a match.

    2. Multi-factor authentication

    Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) is an authentication method that requires two or more independent ways to identify a user. Examples include codes generated from the user’s smartphone, Captcha tests, fingerprints, voice biometrics or facial recognition.

    MFA authentication methods and technologies increase the confidence of users by adding multiple layers of security. MFA may be a good defense against most account hacks, but it has its own pitfalls. People may lose their phones or SIM cards and not be able to generate an authentication code.

    3. Certificate-based authentication

    Certificate-based authentication technologies identify users, machines or devices by using digital certificates. A digital certificate is an electronic document based on the idea of a driver’s license or a passport.

    The certificate contains the digital identity of a user including a public key, and the digital signature of a certification authority. Digital certificates prove the ownership of a public key and issued only by a certification authority.

    Users provide their digital certificates when they sign in to a server. The server verifies the credibility of the digital signature and the certificate authority. The server then uses cryptography to confirm that the user has a correct private key associated with the certificate.

    4. Biometric authentication

    Biometrics authentication is a security process that relies on the unique biological characteristics of an individual. Here are key advantages of using biometric authentication technologies:

    Biological characteristics can be easily compared to authorized features saved in a database.

    Biometric authentication can control physical access when installed on gates and doors.

    You can add biometrics into your multi-factor authentication process.

    Biometric authentication technologies are used by consumers, governments and private corporations including airports, military bases, and national borders. The technology is increasingly adopted due to the ability to achieve a high level of security without creating friction for the user. Common biometric authentication methods include:

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    Which one of the following user identification and authentication techniques is least secure

    Click here👆to get an answer to your question ✍️ Which one of the following user identification and authentication techniques is least secure


    Which one of the following user identification and authentication techniques is least secure




    Smart tokens


    User IDs and Passwords


    All of the above

    Medium Open in App Solution Verified by Toppr

    Correct option is C)

    User IDs and Passwords are user identification and authentication techniques is least secure.

    User authentication is a process that allows a device to verify the identify of someone who connects to a network resource. There are many technologies currently available to a network administrator to authenticate users.

    Authentication is the process of determining whether someone or something is, in fact, who or what it declares itself to be. Authentication technology provides access control for systems by checking to see if a user's credentials match the credentials in a database of authorized users or in a data authentication server.

    Users are usually identified with a user ID, and authentication is accomplished when the user provides a credential.

    Example:- a password, that matches with that user ID. Most users are most familiar with using a password, which, as a piece of information that should be known only to the user, is called a knowledge authentication factor.

    A password is a string of characters used to verify the identity of a user during the authentication process.

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    What is Authentication?

    Learn how authentication uses a database of credentials to determine if a user has the proper permissions to access systems, applications and data.

    Tech Accelerator

    What is cyber hygiene and why is it important?

    Home IAM Network security authentication



    Mary E. Shacklett, Transworld Data

    Linda Rosencrance

    What is authentication?

    Authentication is the process of determining whether someone or something is, in fact, who or what it says it is. Authentication technology provides access control for systems by checking to see if a user's credentials match the credentials in a database of authorized users or in a data authentication server. In doing this, authentication assures secure systems, secure processes and enterprise information security.

    There are several authentication types. For purposes of user identity, users are typically identified with a user ID, and authentication occurs when the user provides credentials such as a password that matches their user ID. The practice of requiring a user ID and password is known as single-factor authentication (SFA). In recent years, companies have strengthened authentication by asking for additional authentication factors, such as a unique code that is provided to a user over a mobile device when a sign-on is attempted or a biometric signature, like a facial scan or thumbprint. This is known as two-factor authentication (2FA).

    Authentication factors can even go further than SFA, which requires a user ID and password, or 2FA, which requires a user ID, password and biometric signature. When three or more identity verification factors are used for authentication -- for example, a user ID and password, biometric signature and perhaps a personal question the user must answer -- it is called multifactor authentication (MFA).

    Why is authentication important in cybersecurity?

    Authentication enables organizations to keep their networks secure by permitting only authenticated users or processes to gain access to their protected resources. This may include computer systems, networks, databases, websites and other network-based applications or services.


    What is cyber hygiene and why is it important?

    Which also includes:

    Enterprise cybersecurity hygiene checklist for 2022

    The 7 elements of an enterprise cybersecurity culture

    Top 5 password hygiene tips and best practices

    Once authenticated, a user or process is usually subjected to an authorization process to determine whether the authenticated entity should be permitted access to a specific protected resource or system. A user can be authenticated but not be given access to a specific resource if that user was not granted permission to access it.

    The terms authentication and authorization are often used interchangeably. While they are often implemented together, they are two distinct functions. Authentication is the process of validating the identity of a registered user or process before enabling access to protected networks and systems. Authorization is a more granular process that validates that the authenticated user or process has been granted permission to gain access to the specific resource that has been requested. The process by which access to those resources is restricted to a certain number of users is called access control. The authentication process always comes before the authorization process.

    How does authentication work?

    During authentication, credentials provided by the user are compared to those on file in a database of authorized users' information either on the local operating system server or through an authentication server. If the credentials entered match those on file and the authenticated entity is authorized to use the resource, the user is granted access. User permissions determine which resources the user gains access to and also any other access rights that are linked to the user, such as during which hours the user can access the resource and how much of the resource the user is allowed to consume.

    Traditionally, authentication was accomplished by the systems or resources being accessed. For example, a server would authenticate users using its own password system, login IDs, or usernames and passwords.

    However, the web's application protocols -- Hypertext Transfer Protocol and HTTP Secure -- are stateless, meaning that strict authentication would require end users to reauthenticate each time they access a resource using HTTPS. To simplify user authentication for web applications, the authenticating system issues a signed authentication token to the end-user application; that token is appended to every request from the client. This means that users do not have to sign on every time they use a web application.

    What is authentication used for?

    User and process authentication are used to ensure that only authorized individuals or processes are allowed to access company IT resources. Depending on the use cases for which authentication is used, authentication can consist of either SFA, 2FA or MFA.

    The most common implementation of authentication is SFA, which requires a user ID and a password for sign-on and access. However, since banks and many companies now use online banking and e-commerce to conduct business and store customer Social Security and credit and debit card numbers, there is an increased use of 2FA and even MFA, which requires users and customers to enter not only a user ID and password, but also additional authentication information.

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