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How Adaptive Authentication Keeps You Secure Online

The world today looks for convenience in every day to day task. Banking transactions is the most important of all. Thanks to internet banking, a lot of people now bank at their convenience. While the process is extremely beneficial to us as a whole, there are a few areas of caution with regards to online banking. Online transactions can leave bank accounts open to hackers and fraudsters who indulge in identity theft related crimes to siphon off funds from the customer’s accounts.

Some of the most common online threats are:-

Spyware:

Spyware is a type of software that is downloaded on a person’s device without his knowledge. This software can collect data and send it to the hacker responsible for creating the spyware. The data can include anything from private transaction details stored on the victim’s computer to a list of each individual keystroke a customer makes online via ’key logger’ software. These keystrokes can also include a victim’s financial credit card details in case the victim makes a purchase online and is required to include the card details on a website.

Unsecure Websites:

There is a standard communications protocol of verification that websites use to indicate its level of security. This standard is known as “HTTPS” or “Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure”, and is usually indicated by the symbol of a ‘lock’ that shows up before a web address in the browser. Websites using HTTPS are regarded as more secure and less likely to be subject to wiretapping and man-in-the-middle attacks that involve a third party secretly stealing data in the middle of a transaction.

Viruses:

A virus is any program that can alter the way a person’s computer works in a harmful manner. These software programs are often undetectable without anti-virus software and can lead to anything from loss of personal data to taking over the functions of the infected device or any of its components. Once the hacker has control, he can use a person’s device to make transactions in his name and even transfer money to his own account.

To combat these inevitable threats, financial institutions like Axis Bank, have incorporated numerous security features to verify if the person accessing the account is the actual account holder or if the account has been compromised.

Introducing Adaptive Authentication

The threats that loom the largest over victims are ones that require a simple username and a password. Since passwords can be stolen online, banks have resorted to a new method to combat this menace. It is called Adaptive Authentication.

In this method of security, a customer has to answer three questions while setting up their account. When one logs in from a different device or browser that has not been regularly used, they are asked to answer the questions required to verify their identity for future transactions. This added layer of security is known as Adaptive Authentication.

There are a variety of questions the customer can choose from and it is important to select the ones that are the most private. The answers to these questions must be memorised and preferably not written down, since written documents can easily be stolen or lost. These questions will be asked to verify a device every time a customer logs in from a new system. Once the questions are answered correctly and the device is deemed ‘secure’, the login is successful.

If the internet connection is lost or the transaction is cancelled midway due to the device powering off, the ‘secure’ status is revoked, and a customer must answer the three questions again to ensure that the real owner is logging in. This ensures no fraudulent method can be used to bypass the security systems already set in place. Asking customers to use this sophisticated method of security helps banks make the process of banking online much safer than before. The future of internet banking keeps getting brighter, with newer methods of safety continuously being incorporated into existing systems.

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