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Protecting Blackboard with 2-factor authentication

10 Jul 2018

From Sunday 22 July 2018, if you have a teaching or administrative role within Blackboard you will need to use 2-factor authentication as part of the login process

Blackboard and chalk

The change, which is part of the annual Blackboard upgrade, will affect mostly staff, but some postgraduates and a small number of undergraduates too. Anyone affected will be sent an email from IT Services on Thursday 12 July with information about what they need to do. A follow up email will go out on Monday 23 July as a reminder that things have changed.

How will it work?

When you log in to Blackboard you will be asked to verify your identity using our 2-factor authentication service from Duo.

You will log in to Blackboard with your University username and password (as you do now), and then be presented with a screen from Duo that asks how you would like to authenticate. The easiest way to authenticate is by using the Duo Mobile app on a smartphone to receive a simple push notification (allowing you to respond with a simple tap) or generate a passcode.

You will need to follow the new login process every time you start a new session in Blackboard – ie, if you close your internet browser and start again.

Why are we doing it?

2-factor authentication provides an additional layer of security should your username and password get in to the wrong hands – it is part of a programme of work to better protect University systems and services.

What do I need to do?

The University’s 2-factor authentication service is provided by Duo, and most people are already using it as part of the IT login process, and to gain access to systems such as MyView. Please note that unlike IT login, you will not need to use the GlobalProtect VPN.

There will be some cases where people will need to sign up to Duo for the first time and register a 2-factor device – this could include students who have a teaching role in Blackboard.

The University IT Account Manager offers self-service options to manage your authentication method and devices.

You can read more about the 2-factor device options available:

And there’s more information about 2-factor authentication, including Frequently Asked Questions: