All You Need To Know About the Two Factor Authentication (2FA) in digital currency storage

The requirements for maintaining a viable and safe cryptocurrency scene is changing, especially in terms of security of access to information and digital funds. In fact, one of the many concerns of cryptocurrency stakeholders and the speculating public, bothers around the loopholes and security inadequacies that have plagued digital asset management.

In contemporary times, the activities of online thieves have reasonably come on the rise, thus necessitating the creation of a more effective fail-proof system for ensuring the safekeeping of online-stored digital currencies. Two Factor authentication (2FA) is the security framework that is now used to ensure that internet stored digital currencies (stored in hot wallets), are continually kept safe and inaccessible to just anybody.

How does 2FA work?

2FA improves on the convention alone step password login processes- where the user is more then often only required to provide the email or user name used for registration and the login password they had provided. The issue with this regular method, is that it poses less work for cybercriminals when they make attempts on breaking through to access information or other protected valuables.

The basic function of 2FA, is to provide an additional security layer, whose conditions and requirements must also be met before passage is granted. Hence, after the first security procedure has been passed, the attempted login is expected to further provide requirements for another security obstacle, before access is granted; hence the name, two-factor authentication. Note that its format is different from the email and password verification method, and 2FA may come in different forms depending on which procedure the service provider and/or user has deemed more secure for their type of activity.

Cryptocurrency online wallet providers- especially exchanges, are probably the first to adopt this framework. Over the years, the one step login protocol has proved insufficient, and many exchange accounts had become vulnerable to being easily hacked, where millions of users’ funds have been carted away. Analysts and stakeholders have mentioned that individual loss of digital funds would be cut down enormously if 2FA modules are implemented on storage wallets- especially online based wallets. In order to qualify as being security compliant- which is essential for securing customer/user trust, cryptocurrency exchange platforms are becoming more inclined to enable two-factor authentication modules on their hosted accounts.

However, note that there are different models or forms by which 2FA could come, and it is essential to discover which of the models plays well in ensuring a security tight digital storage facility.

The different options for carrying out 2FA

In 2FA, the basic thing the user requires before being granted passage, is a combination of codes. These codes are peculiar, and they are expected to be solely known by the original account owners. Usually, for each login attempt, a new code is generated and fit for that particular login process. What differs however, is the method by which these codes are made available to the user who needs them. There are three basic methods by which these codes are being accessed, and all cryptocurrency exchanges that have implemented 2FA would use any or all of these methods:

  • Mobile phone SMS 2FA, where the code numbers are being sent directly to the cell phones that have been linked with the concerned accounts. Users consequently would provide the codes from their phones (if they were carrying out the activity), or withhold it- if the attempt was fraudulent.
  • Software application facilitated 2FA, where thirdparty applications like the Google authenticator is used to ensure that only the owners of the account are able to gain access. In this, the user links the authenticating software to their crypto accounts, and subsequently receives the 2FA verification codes via the app.
  • 2FA codes via hardware token, may currently be the safest and most convenient 2FA verification method. This format makes use of a physical device that connects to your crypto accounts, and from which you derive the codes for each login.

Every of these methods have their individual pros and cons, although they would always serve better than the one step login processes. The bottom line is that the user is able to discover which method suits them well, and that the necessary information are kept intact.