Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) & Conditional Access

Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) & Conditional Access

Learn how to take advantage of these services from Azure Active Directory!

Recently, Microsoft started to offer a free cloud-based Azure Active Directory Multi-Factor Authentication. In addition, you can gain many premium features such as branding, password protection, hybrid identities, group access management, conditional access, and identity protect & governance with different paid versions. Read on to find out which version is best for your organization and how a deployment will best optimize your organization!

What is Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)?  

At the basic level, Multi-Factor Authentication has added security in a two-step verification process. This introduces a significant challenge to attackers because even if an attacker manages to learn a user’s credentials, it is useless without also having an additional authentication method. The combination of these can be a trusted and not easily duplicated device (such as a registered cellphone), biometrics like facial recognition or fingerprint access, or a domain-joined PC.

Multi-Factor Authentication – Free to Use!

Users and employees now connect to organizational resources in a variety of scenarios. Users connect from organization-owned, personal, and public devices- both on and off the corporate network on a variety of platforms. This world today has an intense need for the security of user accounts and passwords no longer are enough. Azure Multi-Factor Authentication helps safeguard access to data and applications within an organization. Organizations can also take advantage of Conditional Access to make the solution tailored to their specific needs.

Everyone should be taking advantage of at least the free version of Multi-Factor Authentication! This is a great benefit to organizations and should be implemented today if it hasn’t already been. Microsoft offers two different paid Azure Active Directory Plans to go with the free MFA that provide a better security experience. Read on to understand how they pair, and which one is best for your organization!

What is Conditional Access?  

Conditional Access is used by administrators to empower users to be productive wherever and whenever, and to protect the organization’s assets and data. Conditional Access can either block or grant access to certain users based on various criteria. Common signals that Conditional Access can be implemented with are: specific users or groups, IP locations, type of device, application trying to be accessed, real-time and calculated risk detection, and Microsoft Cloud App Security. There are different Azure AD Plans available – Plan 1 has Conditional Access based on group, location, and device status, however, only Plan 2 has Conditional Access Policies that are risk-based.

Basic conditional access reduces MFA prompts and uses a second factor like being connected in a company office or connecting from a domain-joined PC. This includes Multi-Factor Authentication with Conditional Access and 3rd party MFA partner integration. Organizations are also able to set up Terms of Use for specific user groups and limit access to things like SharePoint. By adding on either of the Azure Active Directory Plans to the Free Edition, organizations boost their security for users on a variety of platforms and allow better productivity and security on to go.

What Plan is Best for Me?  

Check out our blog Azure Active Directory: Finding the Best Plan, which explains the differences between the free and different paid Azure AD Plans available to implement. Microsoft also just announced an update to Conditional Access Baseline Security features. Read our blog Conditional Access: Important Baseline Announcement to stay on top of this and make sure to apply the new update.

How can Interlink Help?  

Interlink is here to guide and assist you regardless of what Microsoft licensing, subscription, or plan your organization currently has. Please reach out to us for more information on pricing and features, and how Multi-Factor Authentication & Conditional Access can optimize your organization specifically! Your MFA deployment plan is crucial to its success in your organization. We work hard to make sure our clients know exactly what they are getting, and how to get the most from their investments.

Interested in learning more? View our similar blog: ON-DEMAND WEBINAR | End to End Compliance with Microsoft 365.

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