UNB launches multi-factor authentication for Microsoft services

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An email was sent recently to advise students that they must pre-register for the multi-factor authentication update before the start of next semester. 

(Wolfgang Duchtel/The Baron)

Microsoft services update 

Multi-factor authentication is a layer of security that consists of extra verification to receive access to a system or service. 

As of January 5, students, staff, and guests will need multi-factor authentication to get access to UNB Microsoft services like the university email, Teams, OneDrive, SharePoint, Word, and Excel. 

The multi-factor authorization will also be required for other IT services. 

The reason for this new extra layer of protection is to protect UNB accounts and services from cyber-attacks, which is a critical problem for UNB. 

Pre-registration 

All students need to pre-register for multi-factor authentication before January 5, otherwise they will not be able to access their Microsoft services until they set the multi-factor authentication. 

There are currently two methods to pre-register for multi-factor authentication, which are via Microsoft authentication app and text message

It is also recommended to set up a backup method. 

Any questions about registration can be emailed to the IT Service Desk.  

Using multi-factor authentication 

After registering, students can contact the IT Service Desk to schedule a date to turn on the multi-factor authentication early if they wish. 

Why is it necessary? 

According to Nicki Violette from ITS Communications, there are more than 50 million attempts made to steal login credentials every week. 

“MFA [multi-factor authentication] provides an extra layer of protection that can mean the difference between disaster or just another failed hacker exploit.” 

Violette also remarked how protection is now more important than ever since classes and communication between students and staff rely on online services.