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Two-factor Authentication

March 28, 2014 how-to

Learn about CurrencyFair’s 2-Step Authentication

At CurrencyFair, innovation is one of our core values, and we are always iterating our product to ensure we are providing the best level of service for our customers in every area. Over the last year we have redesigned our site, rebuilt our application and added numerous product enhancements throughout. One of the areas we are changing right now, is the way our users authenticate themselves on CurrencyFair.com.

Currently, there are a number of authentication mechanisms to protect accounts:

  • Password
  • Security questions / PIN

Our March update included the migration away from security questions and PIN controls to Two-Factor Authentication. This update greatly increases the security of accounts and make it easier for our users to use CurrencyFair.com (remembering your PIN will no longer be a problem!).

What is Two-Factor Authentication?

Normally, a website requires a username and password to login to view information or carry out actions. The username and password protect access to a user’s account and act as the key to entry, stopping non-authorised users from logging in. Some sites include other keys such as security questions and PIN numbers, improving the security of an account again. The keys to your account in these examples are always things you know. You know what your password is, you know the answer to your security questions and you (generally) know your PIN.

Two-factor authentication is a way of improving account security by combining what you know, for example your password, with something only you have in your possession, for example your mobile phone:

Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 12.52.43

How does Two-Factor Authentication work?

CurrencyFair has implemented two-factor authentication via SMS messages and voice calls. When trying to log in, or carry out certain actions such as transferring money out, CurrencyFair.com will prompt you to enter a code for verification:

Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 12.36.25

At the same time, we will automatically send a message to your phone with the code. You enter the code you receive on your phone into the two-factor authentication form on CurrencyFair.com. You have now been authenticated and your request will be immediately completed. Easy!

Why does Two-Factor Authentication make my account more secure?

The only way for someone to log into an account is with both the password and the phone attached to the account. This is far more secure than just having a password, as it ties the person logging in to the phone which was used to register on CurrencyFair.com.

Setting up Two-Factor Authentication on CurrencyFair.com

Setting up two-factor authentication is easy. Next time you log in, you will be prompted to enable two-factor authentication by choosing your primary number. This will be the number to which we send the codes for authentication.

Screen Shot 2014-03-28 at 12.53.20

You then verify that number by doing a trial authentication, and entering the code you receive. It’s that simple, only takes 1 minute and greatly enhances the security around your account.

Using Two-Factor Authentication on CurrencyFair.com

Once you are set up, you will no longer be asked for a PIN or security question when carrying out actions on the site. Where we previously asked for a PIN or a security question, we will now prompt you to authenticate via two-factor authentication using your phone.

We’re always happy bringing new improvements to our customers, but we’re particularly happy when we release new features that either save our customers money or enhance their security even further!

Yours fairly (and securely!),
The CurrencyFair Team

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