Headlines about security breaches are everywhere. Even your security professional friends remind you about the topic with their thoughts and recommendations in your social media news feeds. And while it’s important to know why the breach occurred, we also need to know how such breaches can impact us and what precautions we should take to survive in this digital era. In response to the Equifax breach, one article suggests having multi-factor authentication (MFA) technologies for all users.[1]

How you authenticate yourself when you log in to a website commonly requires something you know (your password), something you are (fingerprint or other biometric method), or something you have (a token device such as a key fob). MFA uses at least two of these options—for example, your password and fingerprint—to make sure your data is secure.

Using MFA can be quick and easy—so why not go ahead and use it to help feel more secure? Take a YubiKey for example, which I bought a couple of months ago as my weekend hobby gadget. A YubiKey, made by Yubico, is a small hardware device that helps you easily use two-factor authentication. I bought my YubiKey 4 (see picture) for less than $50 USD.

My YubiKey 4 came with a simple rubber case.

Fortunately, many services support YubiKey—Google, Facebook, Dropbox, Windows, macOS, OneLogin, to name just a few. Click here to see how to enable a YubiKey for those services. It is super easy! Let me show you how I set it up for my personal Google account.

First, I logged into my Google account, and received a verification code to my phone. When I type the code, I received their 2-Step Verification page (see picture).


Screen to set up 2-Step Verification on your Google account

Next, I clicked “Security Key” to add my YubiKey (or other hardware security device).

 

After I clicked “Security Key,” I followed the directions on the “Register your Security Key” screen: I inserted my YubiKey in my computer’s USB port and tapped the button on it.


My YubiKey turned green when it’s ready to use. I tapped it when guided.


I followed these steps to register my YubiKey.

That’s pretty much it! Next time you log in, Google will ask you to type your password AND tap your hardware security device.It really is easy to be secure when using online services. Explore more ways to use a YubiKey today.

As Endpoint Management and Security solution leader, Interfocus focuses on user activity on their endpoint. In other words, increasing literacy of using an end user’s working tool (laptop, mobile, etc) is fundamental for endpoint security. I will shed lights for securing endpoint as posting blogs to Today’s Technology Tips. See you next time.

[1] https://www.wired.com/story/the-equifax-breach-exposes-americas-identity-crisis/

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