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The Division of Information Technology

IT Security Measures Effective July 1

Multifactor authentication will be required to access some systems

In July, the State of South Carolina will require multifactor authentication (MFA), also known as two-step verification, to remotely access systems on the USC network. MFA protects the university by making sure stolen or guessed passwords are insufficient to obtain access to university systems. If you access USC systems from off-network (ex. from home or while traveling), you will need to use a second means of verifying your identity effective July 5. 

To prepare for this new requirement, employees need to complete the enrollment process. For an overview of the set up process, click here

Supported two-factor authentication methods include:

-       DUO Security app for mobile devices with one-tap authentication (can be downloaded for free from your App Store),
-       SMS passcodes (a text sent to your mobile phone),
-       receiving a phone call to your desk or mobile phone to verify identity,
-       hardware tokens, (sold at the University Bookstore for $20 each),
-       and one-time bypass codes (retrievable from

You/your department can determine which method works best for you.

MFA must be added on a system-by-system basis, beginning with the VPN. It will be added to other university applications such as Banner, BlackBoard, PeopleSoft, and the USC Mainframe in the future. If you have any questions about using MFA, be sure to visit the Frequently Asked Questions page or contact the UTS Service Desk at (803) 777-1800.

We are confident that MFA will make USC an even safer place for teaching, research, creative activity, and community engagement. To learn more about topics related to those mentioned above, such as the state's Information Security Program, the university Minimum Security Standards, policy IT 3.00 - Information Security, or DUO MFA, please visit