How to set up Microsoft multi-factor authentication (MFA)


Multi-factor authentication is a process where a user is prompted during the sign-in process for an additional form of identification, such as entering a code on their cell phone or providing a fingerprint scan.


The instructions below will help walk you through the process of setting up Microsoft Authentication. For additional information, see the links to Microsoft's support page below. If you are unable to use a phone for authentication, you can utilize a hard token FOB for MFA; to learn more about this process see: How do I obtain a physical token (FOB) for MFA?

  1. Sign in to Microsoft 365 with your work or school account with your Purdue email and your Career Account password. After you choose Sign in, you'll be prompted for more information. 

    More information needed window


  1. Choose Next.  

  1. The default authentication method is to use the free Microsoft Authenticator app. If you have it installed on your mobile device, select Next and follow the prompts to add this account. If you don't have it installed there is a link provided to download it. 
    If you would rather use SMS messages sent to your phone instead, select I want to set up a different method. Microsoft 365 will ask for your mobile number, then send you an SMS message containing a 6-digit code to verify your device. 

  1. Once you complete the instructions to specify your additional verification method, the next time you sign in to Microsoft 365, you'll be prompted to provide the additional verification information or action, such as typing the verification code provided by your authenticator app or sent to you by text message. 

Additional help from Microsoft:  

Additional resources:  

For more information see, including a list of frequently asked questions, see


Still need help?  Click the 'Purdue IT Request' button to start a ticket.

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Article ID: 659
Mon 4/29/24 3:49 PM
Tue 4/30/24 3:46 PM

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If you do not own a smartphone, or plan to be in a part of the world where you will not have Internet access and are therefore unable to use Microsoft Authenticator, a physical token may be utilized.
Microsoft Multi-Factor Authentication (MFa) is used to protect Purdue email and Microsoft accounts.

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