There are many options available to perform two-step logins.  Some may be simple "low tech" methods, and others provide great flexibility and ease of use. Some options have features that may be attractive to some users, such as those who need access while traveling. 

 

For all users, the recommended two-step method is to use the mobile smart phone app.  It provides the greatest flexibility, lowest cost, and most ease of use.  Users that do not own a smart phone should consider one of the cellular phone options.  All users should also define a backup option, in case their default option is not available. 

Here is a brief rundown of primary benefits and drawbacks to the available options:    

 

Device Type

Supported Two-Step Method

Benefits Drawbacks
Mobile Smart Phone or Tablet

Duo Mobile "Push" app 

RECOMMENDED OPTION

Ease of Use and Speed - Push method requires one tap to complete second login step

Reliability - App can generate a one-time code when no cellular or wireless service is available

No Geo Limitations - Can be used while traveling, including internationally 

Install Effort - Requires owner to install an app on the smart phone (at no cost)

Mobile Smart Phone or Tablet Pass code (receive in a text message)

Low Tech - Works with no change to the phone

No Geo Limitations - Can be used while traveling, including internationally (with user charges) 

Network Dependency - Requires cellular or wireless service availability

User Errors - Sends codes in a message that must be typed in manually on the computer login screen

Potential User Cost - Depending on service plan, may incur user fee

Mobile Smart Phone Phone Call Low Tech - Works with no change to the phone

Network Dependency - Requires cellular service availability (or wireless on some models)

Potential User Cost - Depending on service plan, may incur user fee

Portability - International phone numbers not supported

Cellular Phone  Pass Code (receive in a text message) Low Tech - Works with no change to the phone

Network Dependency - Requires cellular service availability

User Errors - Sends a code in a message that must be typed in manually on the computer login screen

Potential User Cost - Depending on service plan, may incur user fee

Cellular Phone Phone Call Low Tech - Works with no change to the phone

Network Dependency - Requires cellular service availability

Potential User Cost - Depending on service plan and call location, may incur user fee

Portability - International phone numbers not supported 

Telephone 

Phone Call

Low Tech - Works with traditional phone and Voice over IP (VOIP) computer phones

Backup - An excellent option to use office phone number as a backup in case you forget your mobile phone.

Sharability - Must be a unique (to you) US telephone number

Portability - Must be in close proximity to the telephone when logging in. 

Token One-Time Password Alternative - for users with no phone of any kind 

Cost - Device must be ordered and purchased by the account owner or department, and provisioned manually by support staff.

Durability - Disposable with a finite battery life   

None Printed Codes 

Alternative - for users with no phone of any kind

No Tech 

If you don't have printed codes with you, you can't login 

Each code is used only once, and if an expired code is entered, you can lock your account.  

 

 

Article number: 
106731
Last updated: 
December 5, 2016