MFA - Initial Multi-Factor Authentication Setup

Important Note:  As you go through the multifactor set up process below, be sure to complete each step.  If you do not click the DONE button on your computer at the end, the link between your account and your MFA method will not be completed.  This will result in you being unable to access your account.  If this happens, you will need to remove the account on your authenticator app and begin again.  

1. The first step in configuring multi-factor authentication (MFA) is to visit Microsoft’s MFA setup page.


2. Sign in with your CWU account (e.g.

3. Once signed in, you will be prompted to provide more information. Click Next.

Download the Microsoft Authenticator app from your smartphone's app store. 

Android Requirements- Android Version 6.0 or above. 
iPhone Requirements- Requires iOS 11.0 and watchOS 4.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

Once you've downloaded the app, open it, and click the + sign to add an account and select "Work or School account". Select Scan QR code.

With the scan option ready, you can now begin the process of retrieving the QR code.

  1. Click the Next button on your computer after installing the Microsoft Authenticator app.


  1. On the Set up your account window on your computer, click next again.


  1. Hold your phone up to your computer screen and allow the camera on your Microsoft Authenticator app to scan the QR code displayed on your computer. The account will be added to your Microsoft Authenticator app and then select Next on the computer.

  2. You should see a message on your computer saying Let’s try it out and you should get an approval notification on your smartphone. Enter the number that appears on your computer screen on your phone.

  1. Your computer will display a message saying Notification approved. IMPORTANT! Click the Next button to finish the setup.

4. You should now configure a phone number to also be used for MFA and self-service password resets. Once again, on Microsoft’s MFA setup page click the + symbol beside Add Method, select Phone, then click Add.

  1. Enter a phone number that can be called by Microsoft for MFA and to verify your identity should you ever forget your password. This can be a cell phone, home phone, or office phone. Click Next after you enter a phone number.
    1. Microsoft will now call you to verify the phone number. Answer the call and press the # key on your phone.

5. You can also configure an email address and security questions for self-service password reset. We recommend adding one or both of these methods to make password resets easier in the future.

  1. To add an email address, click the + symbol beside Add Method, select Email, and click Add. Enter a personal email address, or one other than your CWU email.
  2. To add security questions, click the + symbol beside Add Method, select Security Questions, and set your questions and answers.

6. You have now successfully configured MFA to work with the Microsoft Authenticator app and a voice phone, and you have configured self-service password reset. Our systems will detect that you have enrolled and will enable MFA for you within 30-45 minutes after completing this setup process. The next time you login to an MFA protected system, you will be sent an MFA request immediately after entering your password and clicking the Sign In button. MFA will prompt you to authenticate once every 8 days for most CWU systems. You may be prompted more frequently if you use VPN, if you use more than one computer, or if you frequently clear your browser cache. Additionally, any open login or unsaved sessions you have will be logged out and unsaved at 7am the following morning. Make sure your sessions are saved so you do not lose anything.

If you currently use an Apple iPhone to read your work email with Apple Mail:
Before setting up MFA for the first time, please be sure to remove your mailbox and re-add after setting up MFA. While in Settings- Navigate to Passwords & Accounts or Mail settings, select your CWU email account and select "Delete Account" at the bottom to remove the account.

After setting up your MFA, linked below are instructions on how to add your CWU email account back. 
Adding Your CWU Email Account to iPhone

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Article ID: 123476
Wed 12/30/20 10:55 AM
Wed 5/10/23 1:19 PM

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