Enrolling in and Using MFA
Follow the instructions below to start benefiting from the additional security provided by NYU Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).
TIP: For the best MFA experience, enroll two or more devices and use the Duo Mobile app to easily authenticate even without cell or Internet service and when traveling. See below for instructions.
How to enroll your first device(s) and use MFA
Step 1: Register your phone/devices
- To register one or more eligible devices/phone numbers with NYU's Multi-Factor Authentication vendor, Duo, use a web browser to log into the NYU Start page (start.nyu.edu) with your NetID and password. Note: Although the preferred primary device to register is a smartphone, NYU strongly encourages you to register at least two options, which can include an office phone or other landline, tablet, smart watch, simple cell phone, or a different smartphone.
- In the menu that opens, click the NYU Multi-Factor Authentication Registration & Update link.
- You will be directed to a page that describes NYU Duo Multi-Factor Authentication and the registration process.
- Select Continue to be directed to the registration page where you can register multiple phone numbers or devices to use with NYU Multi-Factor Authentication.
- Once registered, you will receive an email with additional information.
*Note: If you registered a smartphone, you will also receive two SMS text messages:
- The first text message provides a link to download the mobile app from your smartphone's app store.
- The second text message provides an account activation link.
Continue to Step 2 to complete the smartphone or tablet registration process. If your primary authentication choice is a telephone landline, skip to Step 3.
* If you did not receive the text message link to download and activate your Duo Mobile app, it is likely you registered your smartphone as a basic cell phone. Please follow the instructions in this article for adding your smartphone as a new device. Enter your already-registered mobile phone # and make sure to select the device type (mobile) and platform (iPhone, Android, etc). Follow the on-screen steps to download and activate the Duo Mobile app.
Step 2: Download & install the Duo Mobile App
- Click on the link provided in the first text message you received after registering your mobile phone number.
- Download the Duo app to your smartphone.
- Open the Duo Mobile App.
- Allow Duo to send you notifications.
- Accept the license agreement.
- Do not click on "Add account" at this point.
Finally, in your text messages, click the account activation link provided in the second message you received. You should then see your account added to the Duo Mobile App.
This completes the enrollment and activation process so you can begin to use MFA when you log into NYU services that you access via the NYU Login page (also known as Single Sign-On or SSO services). You may verify that everything worked for you by opening a new incognito or private browser window and navigating to NYUHome.
Step 3: Use NYU MFA
For detailed instructions on using NYU MFA, see the ServiceLink knowledge base: Using Multi-Factor Authentication (on the various phone and device options).
Step 4: Make MFA Simple to Use
There are few hints on how to make MFA easier to use throughout your day:
- Upon your first MFA login of the day, navigate to NYUHome, NYU Email, or another website that you use often and select the “Remember Me for 1 day” checkbox before authenticating. Note that other websites will require the same checkbox to be selected, so start with a website that you plan to use frequently throughout the day.
- On the NYU Start page, set your smartphone to be your default device and configure NYU MFA to “Automatically send this device a Duo Push”.
- Owners of MacBook laptops and iPhones with Touch ID can now easily use their fingerprint to authenticate with NYU Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).
Other user-friendly NYU MFA options include Apple Watches, Chromebooks, and—most popular of all—the Duo Mobile app for mobile devices and tablets. Visit the ServiceLink knowledge base to learn more.
- When connected to Wi-Fi, depending on the locale, push notifications may not show immediately on smartphones. Open the Duo Mobile app and the notification will be there for you to accept.
- You can always open the Duo Mobile app and obtain a passcode to enter manually, even in airplane mode or anywhere without cell and/or wireless signal.
See the below list for more device options.
Adding an additional phone or device
Once you’ve enrolled in NYU Multi-Factor Authentication, you can add or update your MFA devices anytime via the NYU Start Page at start.nyu.edu. Note that NYU suggests that you enroll at least two phone numbers and/or devices in NYU MFA.
- Log into the NYU Start Page with your NetID and password, then click NYU Multi-Factor Authentication Registration & Update.
- Confirm your identity using your already-registered MFA device. Follow the steps on the screen to receive a DUO push, a text message, or a call on a landline.
- Click +Add a new device.
- Now, select the type of device you are adding.
- Register your new device by entering the phone number. (If you selected Tablet, Security Key, or Chrome, you will not be asked to enter a phone number).
- (Smartphone or tablet) Select the phone's operating system. If you have not installed Duo on your new device, follow the on-screen steps to add the Duo mobile app. If you already have it, click I have Duo Mobile installed. Next, follow the on-screen steps to scan the QR code and activate the app. Registration for this device is now complete.
Note: The ability to scan a QR code to activate the Duo Mobile app is always available once you have enrolled a device. You will only receive a text link during the initial enrollment of a smartphone in NYU Multi-Factor Authentication. If you thought you enrolled a smartphone, but did not receive a text link, please see Did not receive Duo Mobile activation text link (for NYU MFA) for more information.
- (Landlines only) Select to receive a phone call* (or text message to a previously-registered mobile device). Enter the verification code provided. Registration is complete at this point. You will then be returned to the devices screen.
*Note that Duo phone calls are blocked in China so this option can not be used there.
You may verify that everything worked by opening a new incognito or private browser window and navigating to NYUHome.
Can't access your primary MFA device? Use your alternate device or call for help
Reporting a lost or stolen MFA device
If you are using your phone or device with NYU Multi-Factor Authentication and lose that device or suspect that it has been stolen, please contact the IT Service Desk immediately (open 24/7). Service Desk staff will disable the device for Multi-Factor Authentication and help you log in using another device or bypass code.
While it is important that you contact the IT Service Desk, if you lose your phone, remember that your password will still protect your account(s).
Updating or removing an already-registered phone or device
To update or remove an already-registered device (e.g., if you’ve lost your device, your phone number has changed, or you’ve upgraded your phone or device):
Note: If you register a temporary device or phone number please remove it when you will no longer be using it. Other individuals will not be able to register to use the same device until it is removed from your account.
- Log into the NYU Start Page with your NetID and password, and then click NYU Multi-Factor Authentication Registration & Update.
- Confirm your identity using your already-registered Duo phone number or device.
- Click +Add a new device.
- Select Device Options next to the phone number/device you are updating.
- For a landline, you may select “Change device name” or click the trash icon to delete that phone number if you no longer use it.
- For a mobile phone or tablet, you may select “Reactivate Duo Mobile,” “Change device name,” or click the trash icon to delete this device if you no longer use it.
If you are reactivating a device, confirm the device platform (iPhone, Android, other, etc.) and ensure that you have the Duo Mobile app installed. Follow the on-screen instructions to scan the QR code to activate the app.
To ensure your device has updated properly, navigate to NYU Home (home.nyu.edu) using your device’s web browser and authenticate. If you need assistance, contact the NYU IT Service Desk, open 24x7.
More MFA Support
Explore these self-service MFA articles:
- Managing Multi-Factor Authentication devices & settings (add, update, remove)
- MFA tips, including setting a default device and push notification
- Using Multi-Factor Authentication (on the various phone and device options)
- Configuring an iPhone
- MFA can remember you for 24 hours
- Using the Duo Mobile app to generate a passcode (even without internet or cell service)
- What to do if you can't access your MFA device when you need to log in
- Using NYU Multi-Factor Authentication while traveling
- MFA troubleshooting FAQ
- Hardware token FAQ
Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) adds a second layer of security to help prevent anyone other than you from accessing your sensitive information online. This is accomplished using two types of authentication to verify your identity when logging into a system.
- First, you need to log in with your password—something you know—and username (usually your NYU NetID).
- Second, you use a physical device—something you have with you when you log in—such as your mobile phone, tablet, or landline phone, to confirm your identity.
The device that is most convenient for this purpose is a mobile phone with an MFA app installed on it. Alternatively, an SMS text message can be sent with a series of one-time passcodes for you to type in. Or, you can receive a phone call.
The service NYU uses for MFA is called Duo.