How Number Matching in Microsoft Authenticator Impacts Cybersecurity

July 21, 2023

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How Number Matching in Microsoft Authenticator Impacts Cybersecurity

In today’s digital world, where almost everything is happening online, securing personal information has never been more important. Cybersecurity is a major concern for individuals and businesses alike, so much so that Microsoft is enforcing a new Multifactor Authentication (MFA) feature called number matching.

Multifactor Authentication is a security mechanism that requires users to provide multiple forms of authentication before accessing an online account. The types of authentication fall under three main categories: 

  • Something they know (a password).
  • Something they have (a physical token or a smartphone).
  • Something they are (biometric facial recognition or a thumbprint)

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Microsoft started enforcing the number matching experience tenant-wide, for all users of Microsoft Authenticator push notifications, on May 8, 2023. This feature is one of the most secure ways to authenticate with MFA and works by using a two-step verification process. When a user attempts to log in to their account, they receive a prompt for their username and password. However, once they enter the correct information, they will be asked to input a verification code sent to their linked Authenticator App.

This code is typically a six-digit number, valid for only a short period. The user must enter this code within the specified time frame to gain access to their account. If they fail to use the correct code within the allotted time, they will be denied entry and must repeat the process.

Number matching in MFA is a highly effective security measure as it provides an additional layer of protection beyond only requiring a username and password. Even if a hacker obtains a user’s login credentials, they will still need access to their linked Authenticator account to complete verification, making it much harder to gain unauthorized control of online accounts. 

In conclusion, number matching in MFA is one of the best ways to enhance your organization’s cybersecurity. If you are not currently using MFA, we recommend that you enable this feature on all your online accounts to ensure that your personal information remains secure. See how you can download the application here.

Thank you for reading this post! If you enjoyed it, check out some of the other articles on our blog or learn how we’ve helped other organizations in our case studies. Don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter to stay updated with all of the latest industry news, trends, and insights.

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