5 places to use Two-Factor Authentication : Twitter + beyond

passwordGoogle has acquired SlickLogin, a startup that specializes in sound-based login authentication.  This acquisition will allow Google to offer a better option for Two-Factor authentication, making it easier for people to secure their online accounts.

Speaking of Two-Factor Authentication, many who subscribe to online accounts aren’t aware of the benefits of using it.  Some just see the extra step as a way for companies to get a hold of users’ mobile numbers, but it’s actually a way for you to keep your online accounts more secure.

If you’re not familiar with Two-Factor Authentication, it’s pretty simple.  In your account settings, depending on the service you are using, there will be a section that says “Two-Factor Authentication” or “Two-Step Factor,” if the service offer this feature.  Once enabled , you will be asked to input your mobile number.  A code will be sent to your mobile number, which you will then input in the space provided.  This will initiate the Two-Factor Authentication.

What happens next is, whenever you log into a device or computer that is not your own, you will be asked to input a code that is sent to your mobile device.  This will make it harder for others to get access to your account, as they would need to have your mobile device as well to receive the code.

Now that we have that all figured out, the second question you might be wondering is, what services offer  Two-Factor Authentication?  Below are just some of the services you should secure and steps on how to enable Two-Factor Authentication.

5 places to use Two-Factor Authentication

 

Google

The search giant was one of the first to employ two-factor authentication.  You can choose between using your mobile number to get a text message or voice message with the code or use its Authenticator app to generate unique, one-time codes for you.

You can even choose to authorize certain computers so you won’t have to enter a code every time you login, or set it up so that you will be asked for a code every time you log in, and will ask for a code every time someone tries to access your account in an unauthorized computer.  Click here to proceed with Google’s Two-Factor Authentication.

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Apple

Apple’s two-step verification is currently only available in the U.S., UK, Australia, Ireland, and New Zealand.  If you belong in any of these countries and you are interested in enabling the feature, all you need to do is go to My Apple ID to manage your account.

Once you login, select “Password and Security” then look for “Two-Step Verification” and click on “Get Started.”  Follow the onscreen instructions to set it up.  You will be asked to register one or more trusted devices or mobile numbers.  You can also use Find My iPhone notifications instead of SMS to get your security code.  Aside from that, you will receive a 14-digit Recovery Key, which you can print and hide for safe-keeping in case you lose access to one of your trusted devices or you forget your password.

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Facebook

This is one of the most widely used services in the world because it serves as a platform to connect with friends as well as to promote businesses.  Facebook accounts are targeted because some financial information is shared using the service.  To protect your account, Facebook offers Login Approvals, a two-factor authentication system that also requires the use of your mobile number.  What it does is send a code to your mobile device when you’re logging into an unauthorized computer or device.  You can then choose to authorize the computer or device so you won’t have to go through this authentication process the next time you use it.

When you login using an unauthorized computer, you will be asked for the code sent to your mobile number.  If by any chance you do not have access to your mobile device or it got stolen, you will not be locked out of your account.  All you have to do is sign in using an authorized computer or device and update your mobile number if needed.

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LinkedIn

To enable LinkedIn’s two-step verification, you need to first log into your account, and hover on your profile photo or avatar to open a submenu.  Click on the Privacy and Settings tab to open your account information page.

Click on the Account tab then click on the “Manage Security Settings.”  Click on “Turn On” in the two-step verification for sign-in portion.  You will then be asked for your country and reliable mobile number to use for this layer of security.  You will then receive a code in your mobile number which you will then use to finalize the two-step verification process.

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Twitter

The microblogging service is one of the latest to employ two-factor authentication after suffering multiple hacks last year.  In May, it introduced the two-factor authentication with the use of a user’s mobile number.  Then later that year, Twitter rolled out a new way to verify logins with the use of the mobile app.  This way, you can grant or deny access right in your mobile device, plus you get notified whenever someone tries to access your Twitter account.

To set this up, just login and click on the gear icon to open a drop down menu.  Click on Settings, it will open your account information page.  Look for the Security and Privacy tab and click on it.  On the Security portion, you are presented with two options, either get a code via SMS or use the Twitter app to authorize or deny logins.  To add another layer of security, you can also choose to make it harder to change passwords by ticking on the “Require personal information to reset my password” option.  If you tick this option, you will be required to enter not only your username, but either your email address or phone number.

photo credit: totumweb via photopin cc

About Mellisa Tolentino

Mellisa is a staff writer for SiliconAngle, covering social and mobile news. She is fascinated by technology and loves imparting what she learns through her journey as a writer. Got a news story or tip? Send it to mellisa@siliconangle.com