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University Information Services

What is multi-factor authentication? 

Multi-factor authentication (MFA) adds an extra layer of security to your University accounts. It's sometimes also called two-step verification or two-factor authentication (2FA). 

You'll occasionally need to provide an additional form of identification to sign in. For example, a code sent to your mobile phone. 

MFA increases security for access to University systems, such as your Exchange Online email accounts, OneDrive and other Microsoft applications. 

You'll need to set up your second factors for authentication when you first sign into your account. After that, you'll need to use one of these factors occasionally to confirm your identity when accessing your account. 


What you need to do 

You need to set up your second factors for authentication.

To ensure you do not lose access to your account, you should set up at least 2 authentication methods.

Choose from: 

  • notifications or codes from the Microsoft Authenticator mobile app – this is our recommended option and works over wifi as well as mobile connections. 
  • codes sent in text messages to a mobile phone – it does not need to be a smartphone 
  • calls to a landline or mobile phone 
  • codes from a hardware token 

If you're unable to use any of these methods, please contact the UIS Service Desk


When you'll need to use a second factor 

Once set up, you’ll need to use a second factor if you:

  • start a new web browser session 
  • log in using a new device 
  • change your password 
  • add your University email account to a new email application 

You might also be asked for an authentication code if you use the University's VPN. This is because it will be seen as a different location. 


Update your authentication settings on your email apps 

You may need to update the settings on email apps you use to access your University email account after you've set up MFA. 


Manage your authentication methods 

You can change, remove and update authentication methods in your University Microsoft account. 

Find out how to manage your multi-factor authentication methods


Get help 

If you experience any difficulties logging in or lose your second factor, please contact the UIS Service Desk