Being hacked is a thing most people are concerned with these days. A recent story ran on slate.com about Matt Honan’s, a writer at Wired Magazine, experiences of being hacked. Last month all of the information on his iPhone, iPad, and Macbook was erased, and his Google account and Twitter were hijacked. The hacker then used his Twitter account to publish racist and obscene comments. This makes it glaringly obvious that anyone can get hacked.
However, the story also presented some good news: There are steps that consumers can take to make it much less likely that they’ll suffer Honan’s fate. And it all begins with two-factor authentication.
If you do not know what two-factor authentication is, then you’re vulnerable to being hacked. What happens when you want to gain access to your online accounts? Usually, you need to simply enter your email address and a password, right? That’s not good enough to deter skilled hackers today. With two-factor authentication, you must also enter a code that is sent to you every time you try to log onto one of your online accounts. This extra log-in credential could be the one thing stopping a hacker from breaking into your accounts.
How it works
Two-factor authentication has been enabled for all Google accounts. You are able to download the app for your smartphone or mobile device. When you log into your account you will type both your password and the code that Google has given you.
Don’t own a smartphone? You may use the two-factor authentication system with your PC or Mac too. Just log into your Google accounts and Google will text or call you to supply you with your personal code.
Not widely used
While this is a fantastic way to safeguard your accounts, not a lot of people are using it as it can be a bit of a hassle. People don’t want an extra step when logging into their personal accounts. But neither do hackers. So if you were forced to make the choice between being hacked or managing an extra step, you will probably choose to take that extra step to protect yourself.