How Multi-Factor Authentication Protected My Nintendo Account
A few days ago, in the middle of the day, while I was working, I received a text message with a two-factor code from Nintendo. However, I was not on my Switch nor was anyone else using Nintendo services at the time. I quickly logged in to the Switch and checked and immediately reset my password.
Very odd and very concerning to a security guru.
Fast forward to today and I see an official announcement from Nintendo that other users have reported unauthorized logins to their Network ID accounts. They finally took action and suspended all Network IDs after the breach was discovered.
I put two and two together and realized this is what I experienced, my Nintendo account was hacked.
This is a case in point proof that two-factor authentication saved my account from being compromised. In order to trigger the text message with my second factor meant that my username and password were somehow compromised and successfully used.
The second factor, something you have (my phone), stopped the attackers because I had the phone where the second factor was sent, not them. That added level worked as designed and why you should always enable it everywhere you can.
Here’s how you set up two-factor authentication on the Switch – https://www.nintendo.co.uk/Support/Nintendo-Switch/How-to-Set-Up-2-Step-Verification-for-a-Nintendo-Account-1466677.html
You may look at multi-factor authentication as extra work, inconvenient, more things to do, etc… If you put your convenience and the extra 10 seconds it may take to log in to something ahead of your account’s integrity and protecting payment information… well, good luck to you. Because at any moment and any time it will bite you in the end.
Be aware, be safe.