Changes coming to multi-factor authentication January 22, 2020

Posted on Thursday, December 5, 2019

Last year, multi-factor authentication was introduced to add more security to uOttawa support staff accounts. Information Technology is happy to announce that MFA will be moving to the cloud, like Office 365. This will enhance your account security and begin to provide you with a better user experience.

What do I have to do?

If you’re using the Microsoft Authenticator mobile app, you will be able to migrate your own account to the new cloud-based system. You migration options include:

  • Completing the self-migration process: We have prepared a self-migration help video and detailed instructions.

    Important notes before you start

    1. You can only migrate your individual account using the Microsoft Authenticator application. Users with physical tokens will be visited by Information Technology staff between January 22 and March 31, 2020.

    2. You must use the scanner in the Microsoft Authenticator application to scan the QR code (step 4). Using your camera or other applications will result in a migration error.

    3. Do not remove your Microsoft Authenticator profile during this migration process, doing so will lock your account and you will need to contact the Service Desk to regain access.

  • Waiting for the migration team: Trained IT staff will be circulating the campus in the new year to help with the change. We will notify you in advance of their visit near you. 
  • Updating your hardware token: If you’re using a hardware token, Information Technology will contact you after January 22, 2020 to register it with the new MFA system.

What happens on January 22, 2020

On that date, the new MFA system will be powered on. When authenticating on the MFA system your account will display two profiles, proceed with authentication by selecting a profile based on whether or not your account has been migrated.

  • New MFA: Choose this option if you've been migrated or started as an employee after January 22, 2020
  • Previous MFA: Choose this option if you've previously used MFA, but have not been migrated.
    MFA system authentication screen, 'for security reasons, we require additional information to verify your account New MFA, Previous MFA' options


We expect the migration to be completed by spring 2020. The old MFA system will then be decommissioned and the step to select the MFA system before authenticating will be removed.

Visit our website for more information about multi-factor authentication. For questions about this change, contact the Service Desk.

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