Google Authenticator

After a user has entered their username and password (step 1) to login to a website, Google Authenticator is a two-step authentication system that uses a software token on a device such as a smartphone or tablet for additional authentication (step 2).

The process to use it, if your website has integrated Google’s 2-factor authentication is :

1. Install the “Google Authenticator” application on your Android/iPhone device.
2. Login to your desired website and enable two-factor authentication on your account.
3. Launch the application on your phone.
4. Point your phone at the QR code on the screen or enter the authenticator code manually.
5. Enter the 6-digit one-time verification code during your login.

  • You can even generate verification codes from more than 1 device, i.e. mobile and tablet.
  • Always write down your authentication key! You will not be able to log in to your account in case you lose your mobile device.
  • Authenticator is dependent upon an accurate time source, so check your device’s clock/time settings, it must be perfectly synchronised.
  • Your device will generate a new code every 60 seconds, on the minute.
  • There are third party open source versions of Authenticator wrote in many languages including PHP, Python, Apache module and more which can be used to authenticate with non-Google websites.
  • Lost or re-installed phone without a backup
    If you reinstall your phone, or if it’s lost or stolen, then you need to re-add your account back into Google Authenticator.

    1. Launch Google Authenticator
    2. Set up account / Manually add an account / Enter key provided
    3. Authentication ID : Enter name of Exchange
    4. Authentication key for two-factor : <16 digit alpha-numeric>

    Links
    https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/180744?hl=en Good overview of 2-step verification
    https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/1066447 Installing Google Authenticator
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2_factor_authentication
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time-based_One-time_Password_Algorithm
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Authenticator
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transaction_authentication_number

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