Multi-factor authentication will be required on all student accounts by 1 August 2022
We’re increasing cyber security at the University by making some important changes to how you sign into your student account and access University services online. From Monday 1 August 2022, all student accounts at the University will be protected by multi-factor authentication (MFA).
What is MFA?
Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is a way of checking that you really are the person you claim to be when you sign into a University service by providing an additional layer of security on top of your username and password. This will prevent anyone but you from logging in, even if they know your password.
From Monday 1 August, when logging in to your account, you'll be asked to provide an extra piece of information. This will be something that only you can access, such as a code sent to your mobile phone via text message (SMS) or voicemail, or created by an authenticator app on your smartphone.
If you use internet banking services or social media, it's highly likely that you already use MFA. If you use the student Remote Computer Labs service here at the University, you’ll already use your student MFA account.
Why are we doing this?
We have robust security measures in place at the University to protect our staff and students, however, cyber-attacks against Higher Education institutions have increased significantly over the last year causing huge disruption at some universities.
MFA is the most effective tool we can use to increase cyber security and is already used to protect staff accounts at the University. MFA significantly reduces the chances of your account being compromised and accessed by cyber-criminals, helping us prevent things like ransomware attacks and data breaches.
MFA, which requires that users authenticate with at least two factors, can reduce the risk of identity compromise by as much as 99.9 percent over passwords alone. Source: Microsoft
Enabling MFA will also make it simpler to access University services. Once you are signed into your student account with MFA you will automatically be able to access all other University services without having to re-enter your details providing a more seamless experience.
What do I need to do?
All student accounts will need to have registered for MFA before Monday 1 August 2022. After this date, you will not be able to sign into a University service online until you have set up MFA on your account.
If you're already registered for MFA at the University and are using it to log into the Student Remote Computer Lab service then you won't have to do anything else.
So that you’re ready for Monday 1 August, we recommend that you register your student account for MFA as soon as you can.
How to register
Registering for MFA is quick and easy and will only take a few minutes, all you need is a mobile phone and to make things easier a PC, laptop or tablet connected to the internet.
It is possible to register for MFA using just a single smartphone with a WiFi or data connection.
To register for MFA, go to https://mysignins.microsoft.com/security-info and sign in with your University email address and password.
On the My Sign Ins page, select ‘Security Info’ from the left-hand menu and click ‘Add sign-in method’
Choose you preferred verification method and follow the on-screen instructions.
You can find full instructions on how to set up MFA on your account at our Knowledge Base article KB14979.
We recommend authentication via the Microsoft authenticator app on your smartphone as this provides the best experience when signing into your account.
If you don’t have a smartphone, don’t worry, you can still use MFA; just select phone and choose whether you want your sign-in code to be sent to you via text (SMS) or voice message.
We also strongly recommend that you add at least one alternative authentication method if you can.
You can find more information about MFA in our Multi-factor authentication FAQs.
If you have any issues setting up MFA then please contact the IT Service Desk.
You can also find more advice about cyber security in our how to stay safe online knowledge guide.