* Multi-factor authentication adds an extra layer of protection
* Available on most sites, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
* Quick and easy to set up
When Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s social media accounts were recently hacked, security experts were aghast to learn he didn’t have two-factor authentication set up. Worse than that, they were shocked to hear he used the same simple password, “dadada,” for every account.
Two-factor authentication (also called multi-factor authentication) uses a separate piece of hardware to create a second form of verification. Unlike your main password, this one is only available for a short period of time.
While there are various ways multi-factor authentication can be implemented, one of the most common is by using your phone. By setting up a secondary password on your phone, you make it infinitely more difficult for your account to be exposed.
For instance, when you log into Facebook, you first need to verify your username and password, but when you have two-factor authentication enabled you’re required to go a step further and input an extra password. So if someone had access to your username or password (or both), they still wouldn’t be able to access your account.
Nearly every site today offers two-factor authentication — Gmail, Twitter and Instagram among them. By enabling another form of verification, you significantly increase the security of your network.
In an age where cybersecurity education is seriously lacking, taking the time to set up two-factor authentication on sites where you send and receive sensitive information is crucial. Take a minute and do it now.