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What is Two Factor Authentication

January 28, 2017
2 Factor Authentication

What is Two Factor Authentication and what does it mean for you when RVing?  Two factor authentication is a feature on many services and sites that allows you to make your account more secure from hacking and password stealing.  As the name suggests, to Authenticate you need to know Tow Factors, one being the password and another variable as well.  The second factor is often a text message  to your cell phone with a unique pass code.  Another common option is secondary questions similar to your Forgot my password recovery questions.  Sometimes services may have the option of using a 3rd party Authentication Key like a Ubikey or a 3rd party Authentication App like Google Authenticator.

The important thing to remember is that the second factor of authentication is only needed when you login to a new machine.  Once you have logged into your phone, tablet or computer using Two Factor Authentication, the site will continue to trust you on that device and will only require a password in the future.  The first time you login to another device you will again be prompted for the Second Factor.

This Second Factor buys you a very secure way of protecting your account from being hacked.  Even if a hacker is able to get or guess your password, they still cannot login to your account on their device without the second factor and without physical access to your cell phone to receive the text message or without knowing the answer to your special questions, they simply cannot login.

To some people this may sound vaguely familiar, that is because you likely have seen this before.  Some services like your banking, Gmail or Outlook.com already have Two Factor Authentication turned on by default.

Two Factor Authentication is the single biggest thing you can do to safeguard yourself from hackers and although there are no guarantees in IT security, the best thing you can do to protect yourself is not make yourself hackproof (that is impossible) but to not be low hanging fruit as low hanging fruit always get picked first.  There is a great website that will tell you what services and sites that have Two Factor Authentication

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From → RV Tech

One Comment
  1. Great advice. Thanks!

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