With email account hacking being a common occurrence, email providers Google, Microsoft and others introduced a 2-step verification process that can keep unwanted people from accessing your email account, or help you regain access to it in the event of a forgotten password or if it has been taken over by a hacker.
It is important to note that you must setup 2-step verification for your account before hackers have a chance to do it first – and potentially lock you out of your account. Computer Techs recommends that you set-up 2-step verification now, as a pro-active preventative measure to keep hackers from accessing and/or taking over your email account.
2-step verification, (also known as 2-factor or multi-factor authentication) requires that anyone accessing your online account have 2 pieces of information in order to prove legitimate access:
- Something the user knows (e.g., password, security answer, PIN)
- Something the user physically has (e.g., phone, smartphone displaying a randomly generated code, ATM card)
If you are unsure about setting up 2-step verification, please contact us and we will set it up for you. If you’d prefer to do it on your own, see the links below for instructions for the most popular email services.
• Google/Gmail: If you use Gmail on your iPhone, an email program on your computer, or certain other 3rd-party applications that access your Google/Gmail account, you will need to generate a one-time application-specific password in your Google account settings page for each device or application. Please read the information and watch the video Sign in using application-specific passwords before proceeding. You can then follow the instructions at Getting started with 2-step verification.
• AOL: See AOL’s information about 2-Step Verification: Stronger than your password alone.
• Yahoo: See Two-step verification for extra account security.
• AT&T/Yahoo accounts (sbcglobal.net/att.net/nvbell.net/prodigy.net): Though AT&T/Yahoo email accounts do not offer a 2nd verification method for login, you should register a cell phone number with your account to make resetting your password easier. See Use your wireless number to reset your password.
Additionally we recommend that you secure your other online financial, social and file sharing accounts. See the THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO TWO-FACTOR AUTHENTICATION (2FA) website for tutorials for most popular websites.