Information about multi-factor authentication (MFA)
What is Multi-factor authentication?
The University has implemented multi-factor authentication (MFA) for all Oxford Single Sign-On (SSO) users across the University. This means you will be asked to verify your Oxford Single Sign-On (SSO) account using a second factor, such as a code from an app on your phone, text message, or a phone call.
You will have MFA enabled on your account when it is created. If for any reason you do not have MFA enabled and an authorised exemption is not in place please request MFA via IT Self-Service.
What verification methods can I use?
You can verify your account using any of the following methods:
- Using the Microsoft authenticator app on your mobile phone
- Receiving an SMS on your mobile phone
- Requesting a phone call on a landline or mobile phone
- Authy desktop or mobile authenticator app
- Using a hardware token
We encourage everyone to set up more than one method, preferably methods that don't both rely on the same device. For example, you might set up the Authenticator app as your default method, and then set up a landline as your second method.
For more tips, please see Making the most of multi-factor authentication (MFA) - top ten tips.
If you are not sure which method to use, we have a page which lists the pros and cons of each authentication method.
Please see MFA: how often should I get prompted? to find out the expected frequency for MFA. If you think you are getting prompted too often, please speak to your local IT support or call the central Service Desk on +44 1865 6 12345.
Help with MFA
There is guidance for setting up and managing MFA on your account on the MFA: Help and guidance page, which includes guides, videos and links to the Microsoft website:
- Guide for setting up MFA on a new mobile phone
- Guide for managing MFA on your account, which includes guidance for adding and deleting verification methods and changing the default method
- Guidance for managing MFA on a secondary account, which also applies if you are logging in with an account from another institution (including if you have a separate Saïd Business School account)
- MFA: Troubleshooting common issues, which gives advice for dealing with problems that may arise with MFA