Protect your account online with two-factor authentication

With the amount of personal information online, one of the best ways to protect yourself from cybercriminals is to set up two-factor authentication for accounts.

WASHINGTON – Do you have the impression that cybercrime is at an all-time high? It seems like every two weeks there is news from another company that has been the victim of data breaches.

While the amount of personal information exposed can vary widely from one data breach to another, sometimes the information disclosed is enough to put you at risk.

Two-factor authentication, also known as 2-step verification, is an additional layer of security for your online accounts. This prevents someone from logging into your accounts, even if they have the password.

In recent years, companies like Yahoo, LinkedIn, and Facebook have been hit with data breaches and, according to Forbes, cybercriminals are showing no signs of slowing down.

There are three main types of two-factor authentication; security questions and PINs, mobile apps that receive additional login information, and biometric login information such as retina scans, fingerprints, and facial recognition.

Setting up two-factor authentication may vary depending on the website or app you are using, but generally you can go to your account settings and select settings and privacy. Then select the password and security, then choose “two-factor authentication”. Once you’ve done that, select a security method that you prefer.

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Think of two-factor authentication as an extra layer of protection. If a hacker has your username and password, they will still need a unique security code, additional credentials, or a biometric login to access your account.

Each time you try to log into your account, two-factor authentication will be required. This extra step may seem complicated, but more than 155 million people were affected by data exposure in 2020, according to Statista.

RELATED: Protecting Your Passwords During Cyber ​​Security Awareness Month

Two-factor authentication may not be able to stop all data breaches, but it is more secure than a simple username and password.

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