Okta Multifactor Authentication (MFA)

Why we use MFA

Multifactor authentication (MFA) gives your CSUMB account added protection and is required for all CSUMB employee and student accounts. It's important, as it makes stealing your information harder for the average criminal. The more difficult it is to get to your data, the more likely it is that thieves will choose someone else to target. In this article you will find:


Examples for why we use MFA

In 2017, Google admitted that hackers steal almost 250,000 web logins each week. That number could be even higher now. Cyber criminals have more than 15 billion stolen credentials to choose from and each incident can be incredibly dangerous. If they choose yours, they could take over your CSUMB accounts and data. 

Okta multifactor authentication setup

The first time you log on to your CSUMB account, you will be prompted to set up multifactor authentication (MFA).  Once set up, Okta MFA will prompt you for a second factor after you enter your username and password before logging you in.  This extra layer of security allows you to protect your data, ensuring that you, and only you, can access your accounts.

List of authentication methods available.

You are required to set up at least one verification method and we recommend an additional verification method as a backup. The available methods include:

  • Okta Verify (Strong Security, Recommended).  Okta Verify is an app that can be installed on iOS and Android devices. With it, you can verify your identity using a push notification sent to your device or a temporary six-digit code generated by the app. Set up Okta Verify on your device. A video walk-through of the entire process in under three minutes is also available.
  • Security Key/Biometric Authentication (Moderate Security). A security key is a physical device much like a house key that plugs into the computer via USB to authenticate you. Submit a ticket to request a security key and once you have the key, you can set up your new security key for Windows
  • Voice Call Authentication (Moderate Security). This factor calls you via your smartphone or landline and reads an access code aloud. You then type the code into the browser.
  • SMS Authentication (Low Security, not recommended). SMS Authentication uses the text messaging service on your cell phone to send you a single-use code. SMS texts are not encrypted.

Why we retired the security question MFA

Recent cyberattacks carried out against institutions of higher education (including some CSUs) have prompted a re-evaluation of campus security practices related to multifactor authentication options. As a result, the Information Security Officer recommended to the Chief Information Officer we discontinue the use of the “Security Question” option in Okta as your second factor for logging in. 

How to select from multiple MFA options when logging in

If you set up multiple verifications methods, you can select which one you would like to use by clicking the drop-down arrow next to the badge icon. The system will remember which option you last selected for future log-ins. This list will only show the methods you have configured. 

Select an authentication factor pull down list: Okta Verify, Security Key, SMS Authentication, Voice Call Authentication

Update or change your multifactor authentication method

You can remove or set up your MFA methods by using the Extra Verification section of your Okta account profile.

Extra Verification options: Okta Verify, Security Key, YubiKey (a specific type of security key), SMS Authentication, and Voice Call.

Get help with MFA

Please contact the IT Help Desk at 831-582-4357 for assistance if you are having difficulty with your multifactor authentication or submit an IT ticket.

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Article ID: 44975
Thu 12/14/17 2:30 PM
Thu 10/19/23 10:40 AM

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