As online platforms and social media becomes increasingly important for social and professional purposes, it also becomes more important to implement strong security measures. Those measures have evolved and today, just having a strong password is simply not enough. Let’s face it: no matter how strong your password is, or what level of authentication the website you are accessing is using, a skilled hacker can still compromise your login credentials.
Undoubtedly, one of the best steps you can take to secure your online presence is setting up two-factor authentication (2FA). The 2FA protocol entails a two-step login process that includes your password and one alternative piece of evidence to verify your identity before you can gain access to a service or account. One such alternative piece of evidence comes in the form of a hardware security key such as MIRkey.
The MIRkey plugs into a USB port of your computer and can be used as the alternative piece of evidence mentioned above to complete your sign-in. This means that even if a hacker manages to intercept your password (or even your 2FA code such as those generated by Google Authenticator if you have that set up) without proof of presence which you provide by pressing a button on your key, they will be barred from gaining access to your account.
What is the MIRkey?
The MIRkey is a small USB key similar in size and likeness to a memory stick that you can plug into the USB port of your computer. It adheres to the FIDO industry standard that merges hardware authentication with public key cryptography and works with any webservice that uses FIDO2, WebAuthn, U2F or 2FA TOTP codes. This combination is exceedingly difficult to compromise and simplifies secure access to services like Google, Facebook, DropBox and Bitcoin wallets such as Electrum. The MIRkey can also offer additional protection to password managers such as LastPass and Dashlane. With the new Microsoft Hello for Business you can even unlock your Windows laptop from the home screen using MIRkey.
Getting started with MIRkey
The first step is to activate your MIRKey. Navigate to the Quick Start Guide and follow the instructions to setup the MIRkey. Then select a service to which you would like to add your MIRkey. Services that support both U2F and FIDO2 include Facebook, DropBox, Google, and Github. For example, to set up a MIRkey to secure a DropBox account follow this How-To guide (with video).
Order your MIRkey today and carry one device that does it all!
Robert KellermanMarketing consultant for ellipticSecure.
Robert Kellerman is an engineer who specialises in technical marketing. He loves his family, making music, hiking and surfing. He is a bit of a coffee fanatic and roasts his own beans. He lives in Somerset West, Cape Town.