Meaning of Authenticating in Security

Last Updated on 3 months by Touhid

Authentication is the process of identifying the users identify in order to access a system. The authenticating system checks the user’s credentials into the database so, that only authorized users can access the system. In this post, we will explore the Meaning of Authenticating in computer security.

Define the Meaning of Authenticating

What is the meaning of authenticating? In general, the meaning of authenticating is that the product or document or message is real, genuine and authenticated by the authority or authorized person.

In computers, the meaning of authentication is that only authorized users can login into the computer system (such as software, OS and network) and can access the documents and files.

An authorized person has a user ID and password to login into a system. After entering or submitting the ID and password into a system, then the system will check the login credentials in the database file. If the ID and password is match or found, that means the user is authenticated and can access the resources.

For example, you can login to Facebook or a Website by entering the correct or authorized user ID and password.

Meaning of Authenticating in Computer System

The authentication technology ensures that your system and information are secured from malicious users or unauthorized users. It plays an important role in ensuring the computer and database security of an organization or individuals such as:

  • Protect from malicious users and cyber security attacks
  • Secure personal, financial and business information
  • Ensure data confidentiality and availability

Types of Authentication

Already, you know the meaning of authenticating in general terms and also in computer systems. Now, you’ll get an idea about different types of authentication methods which are used to secure your system and account.

Cyber attackers are very strong about technology; they are improving their skills and regularly changing their attacking techniques in order to hack a system. That’s why, system users and organizations are implementing or adding new security features to protect their systems; authentication is one of them.

Here, is the list of some common types of authentication services which you can use to secure your system from cyber threats.

  1. Password-based Authenticating
  2. Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)
  3. Biometric Authenticating
  4. Single sign-on
  5. Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
  6. Token-based Authenticating
  7. Certificate-based Authenticating

1. Password-based Authenticating

What is the meaning of authenticating in password-based? Password-based authentication is the most common method of authentication process which includes a user name and password. The username and password are used to login into an application to authenticate you. If the user ID and password match or are found in the database, that means the user is authenticated and can access the resources.

In that case, a password plays an important role in ensuring authentication. So, you have to create a strong password and change the password regularly in order to protect your personal information.

However, here are some important tips to create a smart and strong password:

  • Password length should be at least 10 characters long.
  • Passwords should contain uppercase letters (A – Z), lowercase letters (a – z), numbers (0 – 9), and special character (@, #, $, %, ^, (,), &, *!).
  • Example for strong password:K#b24;gh@2 is a strong password and standard password.
  • Example for weak password: test123456, jellyfish, adminpassword123testadmin are weak password.

Learn more about How to create a strong password?

2. Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)

Define the meaning of authenticating in Two-Factor Authentication (2FA). Two-Factor Authentication or 2FA is another type of authentication which adds an extra step to login into an application or website. It ensures the advance and higher level of a user identity to access a system.

When a user is going to login into an application, a code (numeric digit) is sent to the user’s phone via SMS, call or email to verify the user’s identity. If the attackers know your user ID and password so, they can’t login because of code verification.

The Two-Factor Authentication process is used in ATM cards, Email systems, web-based applications, etc. Two-Factor Authentication process safeguards your system by protecting against different types of cyber threats such as phishing, brute-force attacks, and social engineering attacks.

3. Biometric Authenticating

The meaning of authenticating in biometric authentication is the security process which validates user information by checking humans’ physical or behavioral characteristics. An authentication system identifying and authenticating the physical or behavioral characteristics of a user stored in a database.

The biometric characteristics of a user can be face, retina scans, voice, or fingerprint, which are typically stored in a database. When a user is going to login, the biometric authentication system will check both samples of the biometric data. If match, then the user is authenticated and can access the system.

The biometric authentication system is more secure and convenient than the password-based authentication method because biometric identifiers are unique and it’s very difficult to hack the identifiers for an cyber hackers.

The biometric authentication system is used in many organizations and fields such as military organizations, governments, airports, healthcare, telecommunications, data centers, border, mitigation control, and financial institutions.

The most common types of biometric authentication systems are as follows:

  • Facial Recognition
  • Fingerprint Recognition
  • DNA Matching
  • Eye Recognition
  • Voice Recognition
  • Signature Recognition

4. Single Sign-On (SSO) Authenticating

What is the meaning of authenticating for single sign-on (SSO) authentication? Single sign-on (SSO) is an authentication method where a user login into one application and can access a set of multiple application software’s or websites. In this type of authentication system, users enter their username and password on a single page only one time each day and gain access to authorized all other applications.

Single sign-on (SSO) is an authentication system where an authorized employee of an organization doesn’t need to remember too many login credentials. SSO is a centralized login system which is required for an organization in order to strengthen security and allows monitoring system of all applications.

For example, if you log in to your Gmail Account, then you don’t need to login again to YouTube, Google apps, and Google AdSense accounts; you’re automatically authenticated to all other accounts.

It is very difficult to manage number of passwords for multiple applications of an employee; that’s why SSO simplifies the login system. However, it is noted that, if your login credentials or account are compromised or hacked by an attacker, then all other link applications can be access or hacked by an attacker.

Conclusion

The meaning of authenticating is that only authorized users can login into a system (such as software, OS and network) and can access the resources. Nowadays, authentication system is improving and it’s ensuring the security of an application. In this post, we’ve defined the “meaning of authenticating”, hope this post will be helpful for you.

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