What is two-factor authentication?

How 2FA works, why it matters, and when it's mandatory

Daniel Walls avatar
Written by Daniel Walls
Updated over a week ago


What is 2FA?

Two-factor authentication (2FA) provides an extra level of security and is one of the best steps you can take to keep your Fathom account safe.

Cybercriminals are increasingly using phishing emails and other scams to try and get users’ login credentials and gain access to sensitive data. Protecting yourself with 2FA makes it much harder for someone else to impersonate you and gain access to your Fathom account.

If your password is compromised or stolen, you'll have peace of mind knowing that only you can sign in.

How 2FA works

  • After entering your email and password, you generate a code using an app on your mobile phone, tablet or computer, then enter the code in Fathom.

  • The app generates a new code every 30 seconds, so the code is different each time you log in.

  • If you use the same computer and browser each time you log into Fathom, you can choose to enter the code once every 30 days instead of every time you log in.

If for any reason you are unable to use the code to log in, then you can use one of the backup methods (email or SMS) that you configure during setup to recover your account.

If you are having trouble with 2FA please read our troubleshooting article. It has lots of helpful information.

Is 2FA mandatory?

2FA is optional for most users, however, we strongly recommend enabling 2FA. It provides one of the best forms of defence against the most common forms of cyber attack.

While 2FA is optional for most users, it is mandatory for all users in a Fathom account that connects to an Australian entity stored in the cloud (ie. Xero, MYOB, QuickBooks) and any Fathom account that connects to any Xero entity globally.

This is to support the ATO's requirements for digital service providers as well as the requirements of our partners (eg. Xero). If you are interested, you can find further information on this requirement at: https://softwaredevelopers.ato.gov.au/RequirementsforDSPs

Additional knowledge & common questions

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