The University of Iowa

SAFETYmatters - Two-Step Login within the Lab

Article published September 2019

Picture of  laptop, computer screen and phone

Using personal mobile devices inside a laboratory is not recommended. Mobile devices can readily act as fomites and transmit infectious agents, radioactive material, or other hazards outside of the laboratory if they become contaminated. However, in today’s world there are occasions where use of personal mobile devices in a lab may be necessary.

The University of Iowa now requires Two Step Login ( in order to access applications that contain sensitive information, including Office 365, ICON, and Employee Self-Service. Staff and students who need to use their personal devices to log into these systems must take proper precautions to avoid contamination. It is therefore exceedingly important that staff and students remove gloves and wash their hands before using any personal mobile device in the laboratory. 

Some areas on campus are restricting cell phone use while in the laboratory and staff therefore need an alternative way of completing the Two Step Login. Staff can generate a list of two-step backup pass codes that can be printed out and stored within a safe place in the laboratory. Instructions for printing off these codes can be found on Information Technology Services website: