Why is a one-time password system considered more secure than a basic authentica
Why is a one-time password system considered more secure than a basic authentication system? Provide at least two reasons
A one-time password (OTP) is an automatically generated numeric or alphanumeric string of characters that authenticates the user for a single transaction or login session. An OTP is more secure than a static password, especially a user-created password, which can be weak and/or reused across multiple accounts.
One-time passwords may be used on their own or in conjunction with multifactor authentication.
When used independently, a user is prompted to enter some identifying information, such as an email address, telephone number, or a username. The randomly generated single-use password is then sent to the user via email, SMS, push notification, or other method. Since the user should be the only person able to receive it, they can be assured that they have exclusive access to the OTP. They are then able to log in.
When the one-time password is used in conjunction with a traditional password, the user is asked to log in normally. Only after they have successfully entered their regular credentials password would the OTP be sent or requested. In many of these instances, users are given small devices, such as a key fob or token, to generate the one-time password, which they would use to access their account. Alternatively, a user may download an OTP or “authenticator” client onto their smart phone, which displays an OTP linked to a given login process.
OTP tokens can be either event-based or time-based. Event-based tokens generate new codes at the press of a button, and remain valid until used. Time-based tokens generate codes that are valid only for a certain amount of time (usually less than a minute), after which a new code is generated. These tokens are quite popular in the financial industry to ensure that users’ sensitive banking information is kept secure and reduces or eliminates the risk of unauthorized access to users’ accounts.
Advantages of One-Time Passwords
The foremost advantage of and primary reason for OTPs is security. Since a single-use password will change with each login attempt, the risk of an account being compromised is drastically reduced, if not eliminated.
One-time passwords are randomly generated strings of characters that are virtually impossible to guess. In industries that deal with highly-sensitive private information, such as banking, one-time passwords can help to reduce the risk of fraud, while giving users peace of mind and confidence when accessing their resources.
Another advantage of this kind of password is that since it is randomly generated, the user does not have to make an effort to remember it. The OTP is always provided via authenticator app or physical token.
Randomly-generated passwords are infinitely more secure than user-created passwords. User-created passwords are usually quite weak, with reuse across multiple account further decreasing security. When a password is overly simplified to make memorization easier, it typically lacks sufficiently secure complexity.
Employing one-time passwords also eliminates the sharing of credentials between employees within or, worse, external to an organization.
An OTP is a password that is only valid for one login session, which means it is less vulnerable to replay attacks than a traditional password. OTPs are created within an app running on a user’s device—rather than sent via SMS message—so they are inherently more secure.
OTP security helps to prevent access breaches, even if an attacker has obtained a valid set of login credentials. Easy adoption: One-time passcodes are also easy for organizations to integrate into their authentication strategies.