How do I set up MFA for the first time using the Authenticator App?

Microsoft Authenticator Logo


IT Services strongly recommends using the Microsoft Authenticator app as your preferred MFA authenticator. The benefits of the app include:

  • Convenient, one-touch push notifications to verify sign-in.

  • A changing key token that can be used even when your device has no connectivity.

  • Simple, lightweight installation on a smartphone or tablet.

Before you begin...

Make sure you have a mobile device such as a smart phone or tablet that is connected to Wi-fi or a cellular data service.  You will install the Microsoft Authenticator app on this mobile device.


If the video below does not display or play, please follow the written step-by-step instructions further below.

  1. The first time you log in after your NetID has been enrolled in MFA, you will be greeted with a prompt indicating the system requires more information to keep your account secure. Click Next. (Note: This is a similar screen to what you might see when setting up Account Recovery, but these are different features.)

  2. On the next screen, you will be prompted to set up additional security verification. Select Mobile App from the drop-down menu, then select how you want to use the mobile app. ITS recommends the Receive notifications for verification option.

  3. Click the Set up button to be taken to a screen that will allow you to configure the mobile app. Leave this screen open while you set up the app on your device.

  4. On your mobile device, go to your app store, then search for and install the Microsoft authenticator app. Allow the app to have the required permissions when prompted.

  5. Use your camera in the app to scan the QR code from your computer screen.  Once your MSU Denver account appears in the app, you can click on your account and see there is a six-digit code that changes every 30 seconds.

  6. Return you your computer and Click Next, and a notification will be sent to your Microsoft Authenticator app.  Click Approve on the notification on your device.

  7. Return you your computer and Click Done.


Your MFA device is now set up to use notifications for verification through the Microsoft Authenticator app.

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Article ID: 120597
Tue 11/17/20 2:30 PM
Wed 8/18/21 1:46 PM