Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) at NC State

Enrolling in 2FA takes 10 minutes and keeps you and NC State secure.


Duo Security

Duo SecurityDuo Security adds Two-Factor Authentication to authentication services at NC State such as Shibboleth, which provides access to MyPack Portal and WolfWare.

Get Started with Duo/Manage Settings


Google 2-Step

Google 2-StepGoogle 2-Step adds Two-Factor Authentication for an extra layer of security for your Google account, including Gmail and Google Drive.

Get Started with Google 2-Step/Manage Settings


About 2FA at NC State

Learn more about how we use 2FA and how it keeps us safe.

Don’t be confused by its many names — multi-factor authentication, two-factor, or 2-step verification. Just think of it as another layer of protection for your most vital accounts. When you activate two-factor authentication, you will be required to log in with both your password and an additional security measure, such as one of these:

  • code delivered via text, voice call or mobile app
  • USB security key
  • printed backup code
  • push (or pop-up) notification on your smartphone.

Two-Factor at NC State

At NC State University, we have two services that provide multifactor authentication to the most vital campus resources.

  • Google 2-Step protects our Google services; e.g., email, files stored in Google Drive.
  • Duo protects other NC State services that you log in to, such as MyPack Portal and WolfWare.
    That name may be unfamiliar, but it’s how you access services such as MyPack Portal, WolfWare and library resources.
  • Mandatory Two-Factor Authentication for Google Apps and Shibboleth Logins is required for ALL employees.
    • REQUIRED to enroll in BOTH Google 2-Step and Duo.
    • This includes faculty, staff, student employees, no-pay employees, and retirees.
    • New employees will have 30 days to enroll in both two-factor services.  To find out more about this requirement, new employees can reference the New Hire Checklist or HR email communications, or contact their manager.

Google 2-StepDuo Security


Why Use Two-Factor?

  • The university receives about one million email messages daily.
    Fifty percent are either spam or phishing scams.
  • On a monthly basis:
    • more than 200 people in our university community fall for a phishing email, and
    • 150 accounts are disabled due to compromised credentials.
  • It is estimated that:
    • 45 percent of users will fall victim to a well-crafted phishing email, and
    • 63 percent of confirmed data breaches leverage weak, default or stolen credentials.
  • When your Unity credentials are compromised, criminals have access to:
    • everything stored in your Google account, including Google Drive, and
    • sensitive data stored in the MyPack Portal, including W-2 Forms and payroll, billing and account information.
  • Up to 98 percent of email breaches can be prevented by two-factor authentication.
  • NC State must employ 2FA to be compliant with
    • various state and local policies and
    • standards such as NIST 800-171, PCI DSS and ISO 27002.
  • Research is becoming our highest regulated data, requiring controls such as encryption and two-factor authentication for grant acceptance.

Two-Factor Benefits

The main benefit of activating Two-Factor Authentication is a significant increase in protection of your account from hackers.
Here’s how that happens:

  • Two-Factor adds an extra barrier between your personal information and the bad guys.
    To access your account, they would need to know your username and password as well as a security code.
  • Two-Factor can help keep attackers from accessing your email, documents, payroll, personal information, or research data.
  • Two-Factor requires a unique security code each time your account is accessed on an untrusted device, application or web browser.
  • If you receive a security code or push notification when you are not trying to log in to your account, you’ll immediately know that someone else is trying to. That means you should change your password!

Ways to Get Codes, at a Glance

Technology Google Logo

Google 2-Step

Duo Logo


Voice Call Yes, this feature is supported No, this feature is not supported
SMS Text Message Yes, this feature is supported Yes, this feature is supported
Smartphone Push Yes, this feature is supported Yes, this feature is supported
USB Security Key Yes, this feature is supported Yes, this feature is supported
Printed Backup Codes Yes, this feature is supported No, this feature is not supported
App-Generated Codes Yes, this feature is supported Yes, this feature is supported


Back to Top