Using University systems

Systems update 12 May 2021

The Virtual Desktop Interface (VDI) is currently only available to those students studying on campus. Off-campus provision will be provided for those with assessments due, but all students can access:

Most of our systems can be accessed via the ARU App.

For more information, read the latest updates on My ARU.

Multi-factor authentication

We’re implementing some new measures on the systems you use to enhance the protection of our student and staff data, including the use of Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA).

This means there will be additional steps for authentication into University systems, including the student intranet (My.Anglia), Office 365 (email, Microsoft Teams, etc) and the Virtual Desktop Interface.

You should already have subscribed for Multi-Factor Authentication, but if you experience any difficulties authenticating, please contact the IT Service Desk via or call +44 (0)1245 684357.

What is Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)?

Passwords alone are not enough to keep our accounts secure. Most of us don't change our passwords as frequently as we should, and even if your password is complex and changed regularly, it can still end up in the wrong hands all too easily. This could be as a result of a successful phishing attack, a social engineering scam, or simple bad practice (such as sharing credentials or writing them down).

The easiest way for us to improve our digital security is to have our systems require another method of verification, in addition to your username and password. This is known as Multi-Factor Authentication or MFA (sometimes called 2-Factor Authentication or 2FA).

This additional check ensures that it's you, and only you, accessing your account.

The details you provide can also be used to reset your password should you forget it.

Authentication methods

The best authentication methods combine two or more of the following factors:

  • something you know: a PIN, or answers to secret questions
  • something you have: a trusted device such as a smartphone, or a key fob
  • something you are: biometric patterns, such as a fingerprint or face scan.

Preferred methods of verifying your identity:

  • a notification through the Microsoft Authenticator app
  • a verification code from the Microsoft Authenticator app
  • a phone call to a registered phone number
  • a text message containing a code to a registered phone number.

Registering for MFA

Registering a phone number for MFA is the easiest way to start the process.

Once you've registered a contact phone number for MFA, you should add an additional verification method, such as the Microsoft Authenticator app for Android and iOS. This helps ensure that you're never locked out of your account, even if your preferred verification method isn't immediately to hand.

Our help sheet will tell you more about registering a phone number, as well as setting up additional authentication methods.

Help sheet: setting up Multi-Factor Authentication

Troubleshooting MFA

  • If you have not yet registered for MFA follow the instructions in the Help sheet: setting up Multi-Factor Authentication
  • If you have registered for MFA with only one method, which is no longer working:
  • If you have registered multiple methods of authentication and your primary/default method is not working when logging in, choose the option to ‘Use another method of authentication’. Once logged in, go to to delete the non-working method, and configure additional methods.