Multifactor Authentication Explained


Three factors are identified as the cornerstone of authentication:

  1. Something you know (e.g., a password)
  2. Something you have (e.g., a one-time password or a cryptographic key)
  3. Something you are (e.g., a fingerprint or other biometric data)

The multifactor authentication method refers to the use of more than one of the aforementioned factors.

—NIST publication SP 800-63-1


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