Keeping cloud accounts protected is vital to a company’s IT security. Most data and work processes are now in cloud-based tools, which means they’re being protected mainly by a username and password.

Unfortunately, too many users have poor password practices and use ones that are weak and/or are already used in other accounts.

Seventy-seven percent of all cloud account breaches are due to compromised passwords.

What’s the best way to secure online accounts? It’s to add the security measure of multi-factor authentication (MFA), but unfortunately, a majority of SMBs don’t use it because they get employee pushback.

Users don’t like the thought of adding additional steps to their login processes that could take them more time. Companies also are worried about hurting productivity.

But with MFA effective at blocking 99.9% of fraudulent cloud account sign-in attempts, it’s a must-have safeguard for every business, no matter the size.

Here are some tips for introducing MFA to your team and getting past initial employee resistance.

Give Users Time to Get Used to the Idea

People are creatures of habit and they get comfortable with their daily workflow. Anything that changes it will immediately bring about a bit of anxiety.

You don’t want to just spring a workflow change on employees and ask them to adopt it immediately. Instead, bring them into the loop early so they can get used to the idea before it’s implemented. This will allow them to get over the initial shock or fear of having to implement a new process and can help things go more smoothly when you roll out MFA.

Explain the Benefits for Them (Not Just the Company)

Company leaders are great about explaining how MFA is going to help them and their data security but don’t always see things from a user’s point of view.

It’s important to explain how adopting MFA will help individuals and their team, beyond the overall organization. Some of the benefits you could mention are that they won’t risk getting locked out of an account, that their password selection won’t put them at as much risk of causing a breach, and that they can feel more secure.

Offer a Choice Between MFA Options

When you give people ownership of a new process, they’re more receptive and likely to support it rather than pushing back against it.

There are a few different ways that MFA can be used, so by giving your employees a choice you help them feel they’re more in control.

There are three main ways that multi-factor authentication is implemented, meaning you could give users a choice between using it with:

  • Text messaging
  • Device app
  • Security key

Provide Adequate Training

Don’t just assume that users can pick up the MFA process on their own, no matter how easy it is. It’s always better to have a training session. This allows users to get any questions cleared up and helps alleviate anxiety someone may have that they won’t be able to get it to work properly.

When users are trained on a new process, it reduces the fear of the unknown and mitigates resistance.

Consider Also Adding Single Sign-On (SSO)

You can improve the user login experience across all your business cloud accounts by adding a single sign-on solution and introducing that along with multi-factor authentication.

SSO allows you to connect your cloud applications to a single login portal. Users then only need to log in once, going through the MFA process at that time, to access all their work apps.

This helps make MFA palatable to nearly everyone, including business leaders worried about productivity. Because instead of adding more time to employee workflows through an additional step, you’ll be creating a more consistent time-efficient login process.

Support Users Post Deployment

Once you deploy MFA and have employees using it daily, you shouldn’t consider your project finished. In the few weeks following a new workflow change, users often run into issues and road bumps.

If there is no dedicated support to help them through those initial problems, the entire initiative can fail and users may say it’s too hard to use.

You should have a dedicated help and support team available to your users for approximately 2-4 weeks after you implement MFA. This will provide them with the support they need to sustain a successful adoption of the new policy.

Let Users Know How It’s Going

Teams often feel a shared sense of accomplishment and recommitment to continue with a new process when they hear how it has benefitted everyone.

If you have any follow-up IT security statistics you can share a month or two after implementation (such as, our threat level is down 85%), that goes a long way towards keeping users motivated to continue with the MFA process.

Get Help Implementing Multi-Factor Authentication to Keep Your Accounts Protected

Don’t let initial user resistance keep you from using one of the best forms of cloud account security. ECN IT Solutions can help your Tucson area business with a smooth MFA implementation.

We’re here and ready to talk cloud security with you! Reach out at 520-335-7553 or through our website.