Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)
Last updated April 09, 2021
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Multi-factor authentication (MFA) is an effective way to increase protection for your account against common threats like phishing attacks, credential stuffing, and account takeovers.
Multi-factor authentication was formerly called two-factor authentication or 2FA.
If you are already familiar with MFA, follow these quick steps to enable MFA:
- Select your preferred MFA verification method:
- Start at Account Settings, select
Setup Multi-Factor Authenticationand follow the prompts
You are done!
We recommend setting up at least one backup verification method to avoid getting locked out if your primary verification method is not available.
Want to know more? Read on.
What is MFA
With MFA, users are required to prove they’re who they say they are by providing two or more pieces of evidence—or factors—when they log in.
One factor is the user’s username and password combination. The requirement for additional factors is satisfied through the use of a verification method that the user has in their possession, such as an authenticator app or security key. Even if hackers steal the user’s password, they can’t log in because they don’t have access to the user’s verification method.
What does this mean for you?
When you log in to Heroku after enabling MFA, you enter your email and password as usual and then complete MFA verification using one of your registered verification methods.
MFA verification can be as simple as tapping a notification on your phone, entering a code from a mobile authenticator app or using your fingerprint.
Enabling MFA and Registering Verification Methods
There are two way you can enable MFA: from Account Settings or by responding to the MFA enablement reminder on Dashboard. As part of the enablement process, you register at least one MFA verification method.
We strongly recommend registering multiple verification methods so that you can always access your account. For example, if you’re using a mobile authenticator app as your primary verification method, it’s a good idea to also generate temporary recovery codes in case you forget or lose your mobile device.
From Account Settings
Start at Account Settings and select
Setup Multi-Factor Authentication.
Addto select a verification method of your choice and follow on-screen instructions.
Repeat for registering additional verification methods. We highly recommend adding a backup verification method by creating recovery codes.
You will receive an email notification confirming the addition of a new MFA verification method.
MFA Enablement Reminder
Heroku will occasionally remind you to enable MFA by displaying a reminder on Dashboard. You can enable MFA by clicking
Continue on the reminder screen and selecting a verification method.
With this option, you can register one verification method only. Don’t forget to add a secondary verification method later through Account Settings.
When logging in to Heroku Dashboard after MFA is enabled, you enter your username and password as usual. You are then prompted to complete MFA verification using a registered verification method. For example, you receive a notification on your phone if you’re using Salesforce Authenticator as your method. You tap on the notification and approve in the app to complete logging in. When you have multiple verification methods registered, you can pick the verification method that you want to use.
Logging in to Heroku CLI after MFA is enabled requires you to open a browser and log in to Dashboard first. The
--interactive option cannot be used due to technical dependency on web browsers for MFA verification.
MFA Verification Methods
You can use any (or even all!) of the following MFA verification methods.
- Salesforce Authenticator - a mobile app from Salesforce for secure, fast and frictionless MFA via push notifications
- Third Party Authenticator Apps - Google Authenticator or similar third-party authenticator apps
- Security Key - a physical security key such as Yubikey or Google Titan Key
- Built-in Authenticator - built-in verification via an operating system’s biometric service, such as Windows Hello or Touch ID
- Recovery Codes - a set of one-time use codes that a user can generate for backup purposes, when other verification methods are not available
- SMS (deprecated) - a phone that can receive text messages via SMS. This option is available for a limited time only for users that had 2FA enabled prior to January 2021 and had a mobile number configured as a backup. Read More
Managing Verification Methods
We strongly recommend registering multiple verification methods. For adding or removing verification methods:
- Start at Account Settings and select
Manage Multi-Factor Authentication.
- To add a verification method, click
Addfor the verification method of your choice, and follow on-screen instructions.
- To delete a verification method, click the Trash icon and confirm.
See MFA Verification Methods for additional information about each verification method.