More and more hackers are successfully defeating two-factor authentication

by -
Photo: DANIEL MIHAILESCU/AFP (Getty Images) – Criminals are increasingly adopting malicious toolkits that can defeat two-factor authentication, which is a commonly used and trusted security technique.. Users have been sold on the idea that two-factor authentication, sometimes known as 2FA, is an essential part of keeping their online identities safe. You’ve probably figured out how it works: A supplementary piece of information (often an automatic code sent to your phone or device of choice) may be used to verify that the person logging into your account is, in fact, you and not a thief who has gotten their hands on your personal information.

Sadly, recent study shows that criminals have discovered a variety of efficient techniques to bypass your 2FA security measures, and they’re increasingly using them.

An academic study from Stony Brook University and cybersecurity company Palo Alto Networks demonstrates that phishing toolkits have recently been discovered that are being utilized to get beyond authentication safeguards. It is the goal of a malicious software toolkit to assist in the execution of cyberattacks on a computer. They are often created by criminals and sold on dark web forums, where anybody with a computer can get their hands on one and use it. Researchers at Stony Brook University found that these malicious applications are being used to steal 2FA login credentials from users of major online websites, as first reported by The Record. Researchers have found at least 1,200 separate toolkits floating about in the digital underworld, which is an explosion in usage.

These harmful programs aren’t new, but the proliferation of them demonstrates that they are getting both more complex and more commonly utilized.

The toolkits thwart 2FA by stealing your 2FA authentication cookies, which are files that are stored on your web browser after the authentication procedure is complete.

An attack on a victim’s machine with data-stealing malware or an attack on cookies in transit, where your password and cookies are taken before they even reach the site attempting to authenticate you, are two methods identified by the researchers as possible ways for hackers to steal data. There are several ways to achieve this, but the most common method involves phishing the victim and redirecting all of their online traffic to an accomplice phishing site and connected reverse proxy server. In this technique, the attacker is able to get between you and the website you’re attempting to log into, collecting all of the information that passes between the two of you.

Cookies, once stolen, give a hacker complete control of your account for the remainder of the cookie’s lifespan. When it comes to social media accounts, this might take a long time.

In recent years, 2FA has been universally regarded as an efficient technique of verifying identity and securing accounts. It’s a shame that this has changed. Yet other surveys have revealed that many individuals don’t bother using 2FA at all, which if true suggests we have larger fish to fry in the domain of online security..