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Two Factor Authentication

In this section, we will discuss Two-Factor Authentication, what it is and why it's important.

What is Two-Factor Authentication

Back in the password section, we discussed the importance of using a password manager to create strong passwords. Still, if a service is compromised, and an attacker, or someone else gets your password, it doesn't matter how strong it is. This is where Two-Factor Authentication (2fa) comes in. The thought process is something you know (password) and something you have (2fa). Usually, when you sign up for a service, and they offer 2fa, they use the One Time Password (OTP) option, though more are starting to offer hardware keys instead (more on this). This is usually a string of 6 digits that rotates and changes every 30 seconds. Once set up, after you put in your password to log in, it will ask for this 6 digits string of numbers.

Now lets get back to this OTP. When you sign up for 2fa, the service will give you a QR code. You need a certain app in order to utilize this code. While there is a way on desktop, easiest way is to use your mobile device. Depending on if you are on android or iOS, will depend on what app you can download. Below are a list of recomendations, however, please do some research into each app on your own.

Please keep in mind, once you enable 2fa, you WILL need your password and the OTP. It is always important to create backups. Most, if not all services give you backup codes incase you lose your device but backing up the original codes is advised as well. There are three ways to backup your OTP codes.