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Azure AD - Skipping Multi-Factor Authentication on Trusted Devices

Azure AD - Skipping Multi-Factor Authentication on Trusted Devices

We have all likely experienced the use of multi-factor authentication (MFA) at some point these days.

The concept behind MFA is that you already have a set of credentials that grant you access to websites and services.  By adding the use of an authenticated device such as your phone or a computer you introduce another layer of security that is needed beyond your username and password to gain access to that website or service.

The most common methods of MFA we use these days is a PIN code sent over SMS to trusted smartphone device or the generation of a code using an authentication app that is provided following a username and password to authenticate our identify.

One other way is by accessing that website or service from a trusted device itself. By creating a unique string that is generated from the device you are logging in from, that website or service can now trust the username and password without needing the next level of MFA to be authenticated. This all happens because the combination of browser and hardware matches from a previously authenticated MFA session.

Of course, if you change hardware or devices then you will be prompted to use MFA to then add that additional device to the trusted list. The period of time that a trusted device is trusted can also be established so that a new prompt for MFA is generated to re-validate the user and their trusted device.

Although this feature has been implemented on consumer facing services for sometime, it has never been an option when it comes to Azure Active Directory until now.

According to Alex Simons, Director of Program Management for the companies Identity Products and Services, this feature has just reached General Availability for Azure Active Directory customers.

A step by step of how to implement this trusted device feature on your Azure AD setup is available at the Active Directory Team Blog.

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