Letter: Two-factor authentication is vulnerable

Regarding “Education Department in market for security tools”: The Education Department should wait for results from work being done at several research sites. Two-factor authentication is like longer encryption keys and has several vulnerabilities to access-control malware as well as template hijacking. The weakness is in the system-level architectures and application interfaces.

The bottom line: Dual-factor authentication doesn't buy us anything unless it is handled differently (i.e., entwined). It is perceived to be improved security, but I'm afraid this is another high-cost decision that will be proven wrong in a few years.

R. Ellington Smith
Network Data Security Inc.


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