Security is a big buzz word on the Internet these days. Between hacking attempts, picture leaks, and stolen personal information, users are very concerned about who gets into their accounts, when and how. One way to combat unauthorized access to your Internet accounts is to add two step authentication to them.
Two step authentication is a security measure that requires a security code to log into accounts from new computers. It won’t prevent people from using your own computer to open your Twitter account, but if someone steals your password they won’t be able to access it on their own computers unless they also know the security code. Two step authentication is available on most major Internet sites.
There are arguably very few companies that know as much about its users as Google does. Between email, text messages, and searches, you have a lot of information to protect. Start the process by going to https://www.google.com/landing/2step/. Then click the “Get Started” button. On the next page there is a button to turn on two step authentication and options on how to set it up.
There are three ways to setup the two step authentication. You can download the Google Authenticator app to your phone, which gives you a timed code to input every time you try to log into your account from an unknown device. You can also provide your phone number for either a voice call or a text message with the code.
The big celebrity photo hack of late 2014 came from Apple’s iCloud leaks. One of the accusations during the scandal was that Apple doesn’t make two step authentication easy to implement. It has since changed its process.
Start by opening My Apple ID. Click “Manage Your Apple ID” and sign in with your username and password. Click “Password and Security.” Click “Get Started” under Two Step Authentication. Set your options. You’ll be asked to pick a device to send the verification code. Enter the code to confirm your identity.
Like Google, Facebook stores massive amounts of private information. In addition, it’s also used as a login authenticator on thousands of other websites. Facebook calls its process Login Approvals.
Start by logging into Facebook. Then go to settings and then click “Security.” Next, click “Edit” next to Login Approvals. Follow the screen prompts. Soon you’ll be asked to enter your mobile phone number. Once you receive the code, enter it into the field provided.
Twitter has been offering enhanced login authentication since mid 2013.
Log into Twitter. Open your account settings. Click “Security and Privacy.” Click “Require a verification code when I sign in.” Click “Add a phone.” Twitter will send you a text message with the verification code and you need to input it to confirm your identity. Don’t forget to click “Save Changes.”
Two step authentication on WordPress is especially useful if you run a website that using user sign-ins and/or deals with a lot of sensitive data. WordPress doesn’t have a built-in two step authentication feature, but you can add it with the use of a plugin. Here are some some examples:
Google Authenticator is a WordPress plugin that adds the Google verification process to WordPress. It’s great if your users are already using Google two step authentication for their own accounts because it uses the same app to offer codes for unfamiliar logins.
Duo Two-Factor Authentication is a part of a larger website security offering from Duo Security. You can authenticate logins through text messages, voice calls, or the Duo mobile app.
Authy Two Factor Authentication is a plugin that offers authentication through text or voice call. It’s free like the other two plugins mentioned here but you do have to input your information to get a free authorization key from the company.
We are operating in a age where security is of utmost importance to your survival. If confidential information is compromised it could be a threat to you and your family. Therefore, take precautionary measures from the start…Do it right!
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