BYU adds extra security for employees, students

From left: Students David Graham, Emily Furner and Brenna Nelson discuss Duo’s two-factor authentication services. The service is being implemented at BYU as an additional measure of security to online accounts and information.  (Dani Jardine)

BYU will now require the use of two-factor authentication for employees accessing secure information, creating an added layer of online security.

Employees and students accessing sensitive information such as direct deposit and paychecks, will need to sign up for Duo Security services.

Duo’s two-factor authentication feature provides an additional measure of security to online accounts and information. Accessing online accounts typically involves entering a password or similar identifying information, but with two-factor authentication, users will also use a second device such as a phone to confirm their identity.

(Duo Security explains the process behind two-factor authentication)

Duo’s Phase 1 roll-out requires employees attempting to access sensitive data use the new two-factor verification service. However, Duo is not yet mandatory for all employees and students.

“Individuals may choose not to adopt Duo during Phase 1,” said IT Product Manager Valinda Rose. “However, in doing so, they forfeit access to certain pages.”

These pages would include direct deposit and paycheck information as well as any page involving the viewing or updating of email addresses or phone numbers.

During Phase 2, which will go into effect after the Fall 2017 add/drop deadline, Duo will become mandatory for all employees, including student employees. Students may choose whether to use the service, but Rose anticipates students will adopt it as well.

The use of Duo and two-factor authentication is part of BYU’s goal to provide solutions to help the university appropriately manage risk, Rose said. The university seeks to find a balance between security, user experience and respect for BYU’s resources.

Employees and students can sign up for Duo at After signing up and downloading an app on a mobile device, users will be able to access their information.

Additional questions regarding Duo’s services or two-factor authentication can be directed to Duo’s BYU homepage. For additional troubleshooting, consult the OIT Help Desk at (801) 422-4000.

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