Do you test your two-factor authentication (2FA) messages on a regular basis?
If your answer is “no”, you have a great opportunity to take your 2FA to a new level of efficiency and accuracy. Regular testing of one-time password (OTP) SMS messages will guarantee you a lot of benefits, like the ability
- to reach out to your clients in a few seconds,
- to receive feedback from clients, and
- to provide secure payments.
It also helps to control your expenses on both client onboarding and retention.
We at Testelium help our clients to set up 2FA SMS testing and attain significant improvements in their processes. You can achieve the same results, so don’t miss your chance!
Read this article to learn the main insights on 2FA SMS testing and how to embed it for your business!
What is Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)?
Two-factor SMS authentication (2FA) is a type of authentication used to create an additional layer of protection for any system accounts. Usually, it is the second step after the password provisioning of the account owner identity.
Unsurprisingly, 2FA requires proper 2FA processes.
To gain access to an account more than one authentication factor is necessary. 2FA shall contain both biometric and security solutions, as they make no room for a potential data breach. There are several 2FA technologies available:for the above: :
- voice recognition,
- iris recognition,
- fingerprint, and
Improved security in the enterprise is a primary advantage of the 2FA techniques. By authentication, this technology is further segmented into the following:
- two factors,
- four factors, and
- even five-factor authentication.
There are several industries having high demand for two-factor authentication, namely:
- defense, and
- government sectors.
Banking and financial instructions deal with a high amount of cash transactions. For them, it is critical to provide proven security. Due to the “security first” priority the banking sector is a key adopter of the 2FA (two-factor authentication). You can not imagine safe and reliable transactions without this program.
The 2FA market is predicted to continue growing by 8984 million in the next few years (e.g. 2024), according to Market Research publications ( Source: https://www.marketresearchfuture.com/).
Why is two-factor SMS so widely used?
The answer is pretty obvious: it is a simple and comprehensive technique that doesn’t demand a lot from users and eliminates a big percentage of cybersecurity threats.
Moreover, often online Internet connection is not needed.
So, basically, it works the next way, given the user:
- at first, opens the sign-in page;
- then, enters his/her credentials: login and password;
- next, is redirected to the next page that asks to enter a one-time password (OTP in short); usually, there is a time limit the user should manage to type in an OTP;
- later on, receives an SMS message with the aforementioned OTP password; and
- finally, enter it and access his/her account.
If there are any messaging problems remaining like delivery issues or content correctness, the user possibly won’t receive a true OTP.
What issues could we see?
- the encoding was wrong with further transforming the OTP code;
- the (cellular) network coverage was unstable and the messages could not reach the customer;
- the delivery was performed to an (e.g. temporarily) inactive number.
What will the user do next?
He or she will request an OTP message again (up to three times), and the enterprise will be bound to pay for all these messages, while there is no real guarantee of reaching messages to the end-point recipient.
As a result, the dissatisfied customer will opt for the following:
- either choose other verification options (e.g. email), or
- leave their purchase(-s) on a card (cart?), or
- quit onboarding.
Anyway, most probably the trust in your company will inevitably be compromised.
How to Understand if You Have Any Problems with Your 2FA SMS Messages Worldwide?
Let me ask you a few questions.
Have you ever encountered situations when your customers were unable to access their accounts because of malfunctioning OTP messaging?
Or if they were forced to wait the OTP for too long making authentication stuck in the middle?
These are the main indicators that your 2FA authentication process has “big problems”. You can’t allow this to happen in any case and to any user, wherever they are located/ Otherwise, you risk compromising your brand loyalty and eventually losing customers.
As an example, unreliable SMS routes are the ones to blame for the failures we have just demonstrated. Though a lot of Internet providers claim the SMS delivery rate is about 98%, it isn’t the case.
Possibly, a big percentage of your SMS messages won’t reach your recipients caused by mistakes either e.g. phone numbers, or symbols encoding.
A test tool solution for your 2FA SMS messaging shall help you to identify the malfunctioned point of the sending process.
It could both help you to detect faulty routes and give insights into the reasons for improper performance.
What is Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) SMS Testing?
SMS testing is a process of checking the routes that SMS aggregators use to deliver your bulk SMS messages to end-point recipients.
Basically, this process allows you to send test messages through your SMS aggregator to the test mobile numbers that have the same location and carriers as your targeted audience. When you perform these tests, you can see what results you will have with real users.
The main data you receive from every test include the following:
- status delivery, i.e. is the message delivered successfully?
- validity of delivery, i.e. is the message not delivered to the end-point recipient, but the provider marks it as delivered?
- delay, i.e. how much time your provider needs to deliver a message?
- DVC DLR, i.e. do you receive a report from a mobile device with data/timestamp?
- content & sender ID, i.e. have they gone through any changes while being processed by a provider or remained the same?
By working with these parameters, you will be able to understand a few very important points:
- firstly, if your OTP messages really reach their assigned recipients;
- secondly, if the message reached the user, does it still have all the data it was intended to deliver?
- Thirdly, if the message hasn’t been delivered, why did it fail?
Pros of 2FA SMS Testing
The value of SMS testing for the 2FA process might be non-obvious at first given you got lucky and haven’t experienced any disruptions with your users’ 2FA authentications.
However, it is quite possible that you haven’t managed to detect any issue yet. You might also encounter it later when your SMS aggregator changes the routes (and it could happen quite often) or when you switch to another provider.
Hence, we strongly suggest every business and institution that uses 2FA implement regular 2FA SMS testing.
This way, you will gain two major benefits:
- constant delivery monitoring and, respectively,
- an increased SMS delivery rate.
Anyway, it is a key to the best experience with SMS 2FA authentication and many more.
If you check your SMS delivery on regular basis, you will be able to instantly detect underperforming routes and put proper preference in favor of more efficient ones. This way you will be able to secure high delivery rates. It means every OTP message will reach its receiver, and every client will access their accounts seamlessly.
How Can You Test Your 2FA SMS Messages?
Launching 2FA SMS testing for your business is quite easy. You just need to initiate cooperating with the SMS testing platform.
Testelium has everything you might need to run regular 2FA SMS tests, namely:
- extended functionality to provide efficient testing;
- strong support team to guide you through every aspect of the testing process.
And many more. The well-known business proverb “The Best Service Is No Service” we refrain as “Good service is imperceptible service”.
Testelium is the SMS route testing IT platform worth a thousand words.
To contact our managers just look for “talk to an expert” at the top of this web page, fill out the form, and our team will reach out to you shortly!
SMS testing is essential for the effective two-factor authentication process.
Don’t lose any more time while your clients struggle to access their accounts, check the deliverability of your 2FA messages right now with Testelium!