Multi-Factor Authentication, FTW!

I was super excited when ONTAP 9.3 came out with multi-factor authentication support. I tweeted about it and even went on a Tech ONTAP recap podcast for NetApp Insight 2017 and talked about it.

Usually, there is a trade-off with convenience when it comes to security. Security is typically inconvenient. Multi-factor authentication is the exception to this.   Having something like a token (something you have) and a pin (something you know) is so much more convenient than having to remember a 15 character (at least two uppercase and two special characters) password that you are required to change every two months.  People end up writing those types of passwords down and putting them under their keyboard.

Because of the improved security with 2FA/MFA, DoD began pushing about three years to get all applications to use smart card authentication. The end goal was to have no user accounts in Active Directory with the ability to authenticate with a password.   Every account would need to have the “smartcard required” checkbox enabled.  Exceptions were only permitted when users had critical applications that did not support smartcard authentication.

For any existing application that wasn’t able to meet the “smartcard required” requirement, we were required to document why we needed that software and WHEN it would be smart card enabled. Any new applications that didn’t support smartcard logon wouldn’t get through procurement

Becky Elliott

After dropping out of a liberal arts college that focused on reading and discussing the “Great Books”, Becky Elliott found her way to a career in IT. For 20+ years, she has held a number of roles in Dev and Ops, and the area in between the two. In working for organizations in which poor security practices can cost lives, she’s an ardent believer in integrating security through the entire design process. Becky holds a number of industry certifications including the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

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