Duo Security - University of Houston
Skip to main content

Why are we moving to Two Factor Authentication?

Two factor authentication (2FA) is the most effective way to secure our computer accounts and it is easy to use! If you’ve ever received a text message to confirm your identity when you log into an online retailer or banking site, you’ve used 2FA. It allows you to confirm your identity by text message, phone call, mobile application, and other methods.

What is Two Factor Authentication (2FA)?

2FA dramatically improves the security of your data. 2FA requires you know something – like a password or account and you have something – like a phone.

Log In - Authenticate - Access

About Two Factor Authentication

2FA (two factor authentication): an additional layer of authentication beyond a username and password. 2FA involves something you know (password) plus something you have with you (like Duo Mobile on your smartphone) to prevent someone from logging in with only your password. With Duo 2FA, you still enter your username and password. The second factor provided by Duo is simply an added layer of security on top of your existing credentials.

When will I be prompted for 2FA?  
Follow these instructions for how to enroll in the DUO app as a first-time user. When you log in for the first time with a new browser or device you will use 2FA to confirm that it is you. If you check the 'Remember me for 30 days' box, you will not need to use 2FA to confirm your identity on that browser again for 30 days.

What authentication method is right for me?



Authentication Method Recommended
Duo Push if you prefer using a mobile app, download the Duo Mobile App
[Hint] Push notifications are the fastest way to confirm your identity but requires you to run the DUO mobile app on your smartphone.
Call Me if you prefer to get a phone call. You will need to press 7 to accept the phone-based authentication or press 9 to report a fraudulent authentication. Pressing any other key will deny access. 
[Hint] If you don't carry a smartphone, we can call you on a cell phone or landline.
Passcode if you prefer to enter codes created within the Duo Mobile App or using a hardware token provided by an administrator.
[Hint] Passcode doesn't require you to be online but requires a special device or mobile app on your phone
Passcode if you prefer receiving SMS texts to your smartphone. Click Send codes to have a new passcode texted to your phone.
[Hint] Most people are accustomed to receiving an text message with a code, it doesn't require a mobile app.
If you only want to receive SMS messages and calls, when adding a new mobile device, select 'Other' OS


What device should I select?

2FA Device Options


  Push Text Call Passcode Biometric USB Key
Android - Phone check mark check mark check mark check mark    
Android - Tablet check mark     check mark    
iOS - iPhone check mark  check mark check mark check mark    
iOS - iPad check mark     check mark    
Landline Phone     check mark      
Hardware Token
(contact software@uh.edu)
      check mark    
Security Key           check mark
Touch ID         check mark  

Frequently Asked Questions