Student cybersecurity being improved

September 13, 2022

Brandon University is making improvements to student information security this term. Effective September 26, all BU student accounts will be multi-factor authentication (MFA) enabled. This means along with your email/username and password, you’ll now have a second layer of security.

Depending on your devices, this might mean a push notification on an app, or a text message with a one-time code. As threats to your digital identity are increasing, BU is increasing our security to help keep you safe. Details on MFA are below.

How do I set up MFA?

You can get started right away. If you wish to set up MFA in advance of the September 26 rollout, please see out Student MFA solutions article. If you encounter difficulty, please contact the HelpDesk.

BU is using Microsoft 365 to provide MFA to students. It leverages similar security measures as self-service password reset, so some students may have already setup an MFA compatible device, such as a personal cell phone.

What is MFA?

MFA is an additional verification on the login of an account. If your username or password are stolen, cracked, or used by someone else, a secondary verification ensures that the correct person is logging in. Typically, this is a push notification on your phone or a text-message code to verify that it is really you who is trying to log in. MFA provides significant additional security with minimal inconvenience.

Why is MFA important?

Cybersecurity threats are increasing. IT Services encourages vigilance and sends regular reminders about phishing and other threats. MFA provides another layer of protection ensuring that users are protected if their BU password becomes compromised in any way.

MFA is increasingly used by other Canadian universities, social media platforms, and other online services. We recommend using MFA where available. Bad actors can use one compromised account — like your email address — to take over other accounts, including your bank account, social media accounts, and other personal information. MFA has been shown to significantly reduce compromised accounts and can help you protect yourself from having to recover your entire digital identity.

What about faculty/staff?

Faculty and staff at Brandon University already have access to MFA. Enrollment instructions have not changed, and are still available here.