Two-factor authentication is something that everyone should have on their Google accounts, but the traditional SMS and Google Authenticator methods can be a bit tedious. Back in 2016, Google added a new two-step verification approval prompt for Android devices that is painless to both set up and use. The prompt has gone through several design revisions since its initial release, and Google is currently experimenting with two new layouts. Read More
Securing your account logins with two-factor authentication (2FA) is a very healthy online habit to get into, but it can be annoying when services decide to only send the codes via SMS. An authentication app isn't only more convenient, it's also safer because regular messages could still be intercepted or forwarded. For a while now, Instagram was one of very few accounts I use that only supported 2FA via SMS, but proper authentication app support was promised recently, and now it appears to be rolling out. Read More
Password managers are becoming more and more of a hot topic nowadays. We live a lot of our lives online and that requires a growing number of accounts and identities; yet with multiplying security risks and hacks popping up left and right, it's crucial to use a password manager to stay on top of your login details. Most managers fall in one of two categories: the cloud solutions like LastPass, 1Password, and Dashlane, or the local solutions with a cloud backup option like Enpass (my personal favorite) or SafeInCloud or Keepass. Myki straddles the line between the two, being neither this nor that, but having resemblances to both, plus some very unique attributes that make it intriguing... Read More
The recent rollout of Google Play services v10.2 came with a cool new Instant Tethering feature that automatically enables a small set of devices to sip on a shared cellular signal when they're in need. Aside from a couple of minor tweaks, that appears to be the only major functional change we're supposed to access at this time. However, that doesn't mean there aren't a few other things waiting to be revealed. Fresh additions to the APK reveal new data types coming to the Google Fit API. There's also support baked in for the new FIDO Alliance U2F tokens for secure authentication. Read More
We've known WhatsApp would be enabling 2-factor authentication for many months now, but the functionality has only just gone live in some of the latest beta versions of the app (2.16.341 and above, maybe even earlier).
If you head over to your account settings in WhatsApp, you'll see a new Two-step verification option. Tap it to get to a screen that explains what 2-step verification is and get the option to enable it. Read More
Setting up and using 2-factor authentication on a Google account used to be a fairly miserable affair. The sign-in process lurched from a native interface into a browser where users were expected to quickly enter codes, various apps weren't compatible and required special 1-time use passwords, and the app for generating codes felt completely unfinished. These days, all of those problems have been solved, and now Google's Authenticator app is even taking steps to further improve its look and usefulness. The latest update brings a great looking refresh to the UI, adds a dark mode, and finally adds its own built-in scanner functionality. Read More
The internet is a dangerous place with all sorts of shady people out to get your personal data. One of the best ways to keep your accounts secure is with 2-step verification (AKA 2-factor auth). Google has long supported that feature, but typing in those codes every time you log in can be annoying. Starting today, you can approve account logins from a prompt on your authorized mobile device. Read More
There are a few ways to enable 2-factor authentication. One common approach is to send a text message to your phone containing an authentication token. Another option is to have an app installed that will generate that string of numbers without making you wait.
There are a few apps out there that will do the job. Google Authenticator is one. Another is Authy, which was acquired by Twilio a year ago. The latest version of the latter adds support for six, seven, and eight digit authentication tokens. Not only that, it makes those digits significantly easier to read. Read More
Many of Google's apps are in extremely active development, some are even on weekly update schedules, but there are others that seem practically abandoned until they get that one random update every 6 months or so. With an average of about once per year (so far), Authenticator is easily one of the best examples of the latter group. Given the infrequency of new versions, it's a little disheartening to see that there are no discernable new features in the latest release; but it's actually worse than that, one was even taken away. But don't let this get you down, it looks like this little app may be due for some new tricks soon as it may be entering wireless territory. Read More