Two-step Verification: What Is It and How It Works

Posted on January 03, 2017.

In today’s state of technology, cyber security is paramount.  Websites are constantly being hacked and personal information is exposed, like account passwords and other confidential information.  Having a strong password with a combination of letters, symbols, and numbers is important, but enabling two-step verification on your accounts is even more vital to the safety of your accounts online. 


What is two-step verification?

Two-step verification is one of the best ways to prevent unauthorized access to your accounts, even if someone gets a hold of your password.  This process works by adding an additional layer of security to your account by requiring you to provide an additional piece of information after you enter a user-name and password.  The most common type of a two-step verification is an instant text message.  After you log in, and once you enabled two-step verification and linked your phone number, you will receive a text message instantly with a unique string of numbers that you’ll use to access your account.  The idea is that somebody not only needs your password, but your physical phone to get into your online accounts.  Adding a passcode to your phone adds another layer of security, this way if your phone gets lost or stolen, you don’t have to worry about personal information getting stolen.  Another form of two-step verification is receiving an email with a unique code.  This method is less popular than being texted a code, but it is just as effective as long as your email account is secure enough to be trusted. 


If you have the option of a two-step verification process for any of your online accounts, it is recommended that you turn it on as soon as possible.  There’s no harm in turning it on and will only prevent future headaches down the road.