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Multi-factor Authentication USB Token Frequently Asked Questions - Knowledgebase / Account Help / Multi-factor Authentication - SOU IT and Service Center Help Desk

Multi-factor Authentication USB Token Frequently Asked Questions

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Q.What are USB multi-factor authentication tokens?

A. Sometimes referred to as usb security keys, a token, when the button is pressed, automatically enters a passcode at the Duo multi-factor authentication prompt.

A variety of tokens are shown here:

Q. Can I use a token as my primary multi-factor authentication method?

A. Yes, but if one or both of the following circumstances are true:


  • You have a physical disability that makes using other methods burdensome
  • You do not own or have access to a university-owned mobile device

Tokens are only provided to faculty or staff. Students may purchase their own tokens. We recommend Yubikeys, which can be purchased through Amazon.

Q. Are there limitations on using a token?

A. Yes, there are some limitations to tokens.

First, you must be using a device with a compatible USB port and the USB port must not be disabled (some kiosks and computer labs disable USB ports for security reasons). At this time, only USB A tokens are available.

Second, you must use a supported browser. Google Chrome and Opera support tokens natively.  Firefox plans to support multi-factor tokens sometime in the middle of 2018.

Q. How do I obtain a token?

A. Please contact your IT Computing Coordinator.

Q. My token is lost, damaged, or stolen. What do I do?

A. Report damaged, stolen, or lost tokens immediately to the Information Technology department so the token can be disabled. Departments are responsible for any replacement charges.

Q. I am a departing employee, what do I do with my token?

A. Much like other university property, you are required to return your multi-factor token.

Departments will be charged for any tokens that are not returned by departing employees.

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