When you make a decision to open a virtual repository and to fill it with gigabytes of confidential and highly important data you expect the storage to be secure. Even if the information you store inside the room is not that sensitive, it is unpleasant and disturbing to think that there is a risk of an external intrusion into your private business: no one wants to deal with hackers. That is why deal-makers have a justified right to be picky and to look for the room that has the best security characteristics and verification.
The protection tools may vary from vendor to vendor but their main goal remains identical and pretty obvious: they should prevent unexpected intrusions and data leakages. The encryption of information, dynamic watermarks, firewalls, anti-virus software, etc. – all these instruments are meant to guarantee safety to the data kept in a virtual data room. But there is one more highly efficient and important tool that minimizes risks and hazards related to data storage on the Web – the multi-factor user authentication.
For hackers, it makes almost no trouble to find out a password to any account, mailbox, computer, etc. A few letters and digits have no power to stop the one who is intended to break into your life or business. Hence, it proved to be not enough to protect your data with one password, even if it is extremely strong. That is why the idea of the two-step verification emerged: as a password is just the first obstacle to overcome on the way to your information, online data rooms become more protected and invulnerable.
Key Principles of Two-Step verification
The main goal of an authentication process is to ensure that the one you expect to enter the room is the same person that is, actually, trying to access your VDR. Basically, it means that no outliers would break into your repository and steal your files. If you were meant to share the documents offline and to hand them to your partner or employee there would be no trouble with the verification of personality. But the majority of operations occur virtually and you need a reliable way of authenticating a visitor of your room.
To understand how the multi-step verification functions, you need to find out what kind of information may be used to authenticate a person:
- You may be asked to provide factual information, to share some knowledge to prove your identity. For instance, you may be expected to answer a certain question or to enter your login and password. It is assumed that no one else knows these pieces of information;
- You may be asked to use some objects which you have to complete the sign in form or other operation online. In an example, when you enter your CVV-code to confirm your purchase on a Web-based store you use your credit card. The same is fair when you utilize your phone to receive an SMS-code;
- You may be asked to provide information that is integral to you – the scan of your fingerprint or your retina, your signature, etc.
If only one type of information is involved in authentication process then it is treated as one-step verification. But if you want to increase the guarantees that you are dealing with the right person then you have to apply two different ways of verification. In an example, when you want to access your bank account online you may be asked to enter your login and password and then a code you received on your gadget. Or you may be asked to enter your pin-code and then to sign a bill. In these cases, the two-step verification takes place.
When being applied to virtual data rooms, multi-level authentication reduces the probability of data disclosure to those who were not meant to enter the repository and to see the documents. Apparently, there are ways to bypass even the strongest security system but the risks would be significantly lower if you store your files in a room that checks its visitors’ identity on several levels.