One of the most effective and devastating forms of cybercriminal activity is a technique known colloquially as “phishing,” pronounced like the activity “fishing,” and similar in nature. Phishing is when a criminal tricks a victim into volunteering important details, such as passwords to an account, social security numbers, or other private information. Once those details are secured, the criminal then uses the data to break into an account and seize control since they have legitimate credentials unknowingly but willingly surrendered to them by the victim.
The most common tactic is deceptive emails, impersonating a business, and warning the victim that their account has been suspended or is under investigation and that they must click on a link to reconfirm their details. Clicking on the false link sends the victim to a fake website where they submit their information, usually including passwords. Once secured, the thieves use the details to log in and seize control of that account.
MFA Can Make A Difference In Cybersecurity
Multi-factor authentication, or MFA, is one of the most effective techniques for combating phishing. Phishing-resistant MFA quickly eliminates basic phishing attempts for many reasons. The primary, however, is that, as the name suggests, multifactor authentication requires more than one type element to gain access. The easiest and most traditional single-factor authentication system is the password. Once a password is known, total access is possible.
Phishing-resistant MFA may demand a password and more, or else eliminate the need for passwords and use other elements, like public and private keys or biometrics, for a passwordless MFA system. The Fast Identity Online or FIDO association has been working closely with all major technology companies, such as Apple, Google, and Microsoft, to come to a universal standard for passwordless authentication that provides phishing-resistant MFA technologies to all major platforms, allowing users to seamlessly jump to different accounts, devices, and services, without being locked out, or forced to switch services due to incompatibilities.
This is crucial as the latest reports show phishing is on the rise, with a 50% increase in targeting mobile devices. FIDO technologies like the passkey provide multiple levels of security so that even if a user insists on using a password, having that stolen will not compromise a system as other requirements, such as using the passkey or providing biometrics, are required to grant full access.
If you’re interested in improving your cybersecurity, you can learn more here about Nok Nok’s multifactor authentication technology and passwordless security measures.