What Is “Two-Step Verification” And Why Should You Care?
Two-Step (2-step or multi-factor, if you will) verification is an authentication method which is used to provide an additional security for your online accounts. It significantly reduces chances that someone could get access to your account by simply stealing your credentials. It is used by most major web services:
- Google Accounts
If you use any of these services, we highly recommend that you enable multi-factor authentication for an increased security of your account.
Two-step authentication uses an additional measure to identify whether the person logging in has the rights to do so. For example, Google uses a dedicated app for a mobile device which generates a new pin code every 30 seconds. When you try to log in to a 2-step verification-enabled account, you will be prompted to enter this pin code along with your username and password. In cases when you do not have access to your phone, you can use one of the emergency codes that you had printed while enabling this security feature. Facebook (and Google as well), however, sends you an SMS with a pin number whenever you try to log in from unrecognized computer.
If an online hacker obtains your username and password, he/she would not be able to login to your account without knowing a special pin number that you have physically with you either in a printed form or in a special application.
How To Enable 2-Step Verification On Google Account?
If you want to enable 2-step verification on your Google account (Gmail, Google+ etc.), go to your Account Settings page. Under “2-step verification“, click “Settings” button and follow the simple set up guide. You will be asked to provide your phone number to send verification codes to. Once you verify your phone number, from now on you will be asked to enter a pin number whenever you log in from unrecognized computer. You can also set up a Google Authenticator app on your Android device to avoid receiving a new SMS on each login.
How To Enable 2-Step Verification On Dropbox?
In order to enable 2-step verification on Dropbox, go to Dropbox settings. Click “(change)” under “Two-step verification“. In the next window, select the way you prefer to receive pin codes.
How To Enable 2-Step Verification On Facebook?
To enable 2-step verification on Facebook, log in to your account, go to Security Settings panel. Under “Login Approvals“, check the “Require a security code to access my account from unknown browsers” checkbox and follow the instructions.