Google offers two-factor authentication

Trademark: Google Inc.

Google adds 2-factor authentication to Google Apps.

Google announced that it now allows users to require 2-factor authentication to log into their Google Apps accounts. Once you’ve enabled it, anyone who tries to access your Google Apps account will be challenged to know something (your password) and to have something (your cellphone).

At login time, Google sends a unique code via SMS to your cellphone; this code must be entered together with your regular password. This of course, requires that you have your cellphone and that it be connected to your cellphone carrier. This will suffice for most users. Android, Blackberry, and iPhone users may install an App which will locally generate a unique code (apparently whether they’re connected to the cellphone carrier or not).

Multi-factor authentication is always more secure than single-factor. It’s ironic that Google provides excellent security tools, yet requires users to allow Google carte blanche access to all user content.

I expect to see two-factor authentication capability added to Gmail within a few months.

Hey! Hey! You! You!

Get off of my cloud!

If you’d like to experiment with adding 2-factor authentication to any webpage that authenticates users, you can try It was rolled out in August by It requires cellphones with Internet access that include Opera Mini or other similar browsers that offer JavaScript functions. I use a plain-Jane cellphone with no web access, so I can’t vouch for this site — but it looks fascinating. Let us know if you try it.

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© Russ Bellew · Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA · phone 954 873-4695


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