News

Microsoft Acquires Mobile Security Authentication Company

Microsoft has acquired PhoneFactor, a provider of mobile-based authentication solutions, according to announcements made by both companies.

PhoneFactor specializes in providing a two-factor authentication for phones. Once a username and password is entered a user has three choices for authenticating the login: a confirmation phone call will be made to the user's mobile phone to complete the login process and a user can confirm by pressing the pound (#) key; a text message will be sent to the user with a passcode; or, using PhoneFactor's mobile app, a push notification will be sent to the user when a login attempt is initiated.

Microsoft said that it plans to expand integration of PhoneFactor's service across its whole product line. PhoneFactor's technology is already being used in Active Directory, Internet Information Services and Outlook Web Access.

"The acquisition of PhoneFactor will help Microsoft bring effective and easy-to-use multifactor authentication to our cloud services and on-premises applications," said Bharat Shah, corporate vice president, Server and Tools Division for Microsoft. "In addition, PhoneFactor's solutions will help Microsoft customers, partners and developers enhance the security of almost any authentication scenario."

Current PhoneFactor customers will not see a change in their services, and new customers can still purchase the company's authentication services directly from them, according to a company FAQ.

PhoneFactor's CEO Timothy Sutton commented that the acquisition can be seen as a positive for the small company, as it provides the means to branch out its services to a wider audience.

"With Microsoft's product breadth and distribution reach, it will be possible to bring the benefits of PhoneFactor to a broader set of customers, partners and developers than we could as a stand-alone company," wrote Sutton in a blog post. "And as part of Microsoft, we will work to improve the interoperability and ease of use of our solutions  --  but more to come on that in the future."

Specific details of the acquisition have not been disclosed by either company.

About the Author

Chris Paoli is the site producer for Redmondmag.com and MCPmag.com.

Featured

  • Ransomware: What It Means for Your Database Servers

    Ransomware affects databases in very specific ways. Joey describes the mechanics of a SQL Server ransomware attack, what DBAs can do to protect their systems, and what security measures they should be advocating for.

  • Windows Admin Center vs. Hyper-V Manager: What's Better for Managing VMs?

    Microsoft's preferred interface for Windows Server is Windows Admin Center, but can it really replace Hyper-V Manager for managing virtual machines? Brien compares the two management tools.

  • Microsoft Offers More Help on Windows Server 2008 Upgrades

    Microsoft this week published additional help resources for organizations stuck on Windows Server 2008, which fell out of support on Jan. 14.

  • Microsoft Ups Its Carbon Reduction Goals

    Microsoft on Thursday announced a corporatewide carbon reduction effort that aims to make the company "carbon negative" by 2030.

comments powered by Disqus

Office 365 Watch

Sign up for our newsletter.

Terms and Privacy Policy consent

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.