The Security Detail

Feb 29 2012   7:35PM GMT

PhoneFactor Extends Multi-Factor Authentication to Android

Tony Bradley Tony Bradley Profile: Tony Bradley

PhoneFactor today launched the Android version of its authentication app for smartphones and tablets. The PhoneFactor App was initially unveiled late last year for iPhones and iPads, adding a third method of securing account logins and transactions using a phone. PhoneFactor’s completely out-of-band authentication platform also includes phone call and text message options.

By adding support for Android devices, the PhoneFactor App now ensures that iOS users are not the only hip people “App Authenticating” around the office, house, coffee shop, or wherever their busy lives takes them. Smartphones and tablets have become an extension of daily life for hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Using these same devices to provide multi-factor authentication – a function that has become a must-have security tool in nearly every industry – is preferred by users over carrying security tokens and more convenient than certificates that requires the user to be on their work or home computer.

The PhoneFactor App is extremely easy to use. It works by pushing a notification to the user’s smartphone or tablet. Instantly, an alert pops up on the user’s device. The user simply taps “Authenticate” (or enters a PIN and taps “Authenticate”) in the PhoneFactor App to verify account logins and transactions. To report fraud, the user simply taps the “Report Fraud” option instead to block the attacker and alert the company’s fraud response team.

The PhoneFactor App works anywhere the user’s mobile device is connected to either a cellular or a Wi-Fi network. This means users can “App Authenticate” anywhere, including on a plane in the air – definitely increasing the cool factor for both iOS and Android users.

“Smartphones and tablets are the multi-tool of today’s professional generation. Busy hyper-taskers use them for everything from checking email and paying bills to remotely performing complex and high risk job tasks. The PhoneFactor App makes multi-factor authentication second-nature for them,” commented Tim Sutton, PhoneFactor CEO. “We’re glad that Android is now available so that everyone can experience App Authenticating.”

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