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Security token

Security token

Security token definition

A security token is a physical peripheral required to access a system, usually as part of multi-factor authentication (MFA). Tokens greatly increase system security since it’s very hard for hackers to remotely obtain physical objects not connected to online networks.

Types of security tokens

  • Connected tokens physically link to the system, like USB keys or smartcards.
  • Disconnected tokens need no physical contact with the system but require user input — for example, authentication apps on your smartphone.
  • Contactless tokens need no physical contact or user input and include Bluetooth or NFC tokens.

Further reading

Ultimate digital security