Two-Factor Authentication – A Detailed Guide


Data security should be the utmost priority of every individual, primarily because numerous cybercriminals are always looking for opportunities to access and steal users’ data and use it for malicious purposes.  With the advancements in technology, there has also been an increase in the methods following which cybercriminals can commit cybercrimes. According to CNET, 2021 witnessed a record-breaking number of data breaches. Hence, every user, irrespective of which online platform they use for storing data, should follow numerous safety methods to protect their data and keep it safe from breaches and attacks. 

One of the most effective ways of amping up the protection of any online platform where users have an account is to use 2FA or 2-Factor Authentication. Almost all the major online websites offer a 2FA system of security to ensure that the data and identity of users stay safe from cybercriminals. This article will provide an in-depth look into two-factor Authentication and its numerous aspects. Let us begin:

What is Two-Factor Authentication?

Also referred to as 2FA, Two-Factor Authentication refers to a system of authentication which offers two ways to verify the identity of users, i.e., whether it is them who are trying to access their account or not. It is a universally-accepted system of security that enhances the security of any online account you have. It involves the user providing the website or platform with information that only they know about. For instance, most websites ask you to select a few security questions and answer them before signing up on the platform. Once you have signed up on the platform and enabled 2FA, you would be required to answer the security questions correctly to gain access if the platform suspects that it is not you who is trying to log in.

Which Major Platforms Feature 2FA?

Almost every major online platform offers the 2FA method of authentication. Let us take a look at two of the most popular ones:

Apple –  Apple, one of the world’s biggest companies, offers top-tier security on all of its devices to ensure data safety and security. Even the online account that Apple users use to sign in to Apple’s services is protected by the 2FA method of protection. Keeping in mind that Apple ID stores sensitive details of users such as credit and debit card details, contact information, etc., the two-factor authentication method keeps users’ information highly safe and secure. 

Even though the feature significantly amps up the security quotient, it may become a hassle for users who switch between accounts and devices to keep proving their identity continuously. Hence, if you own Apple devices and are wondering how to turn off two-factor authentication for Apple ID, there are numerous ways following which you can disable the security feature. For instance, you can turn off the 2FA feature on your Mac by signing in to your Apple account, opening the security page, and clicking on the “Turn Off Two-Factor Authentication”, verifying it, answering the security questions, and confirming it. Similarly, you can turn off the 2FA on your iPhone by opening the Settings utility, clicking on the “Password & Security” option present in the Apple ID menu, and tapping on “Continue” after selecting the “Turn Off Two-Factor Authentication”. 

Google – Another major globally-recognized MNC that secures all its services using the 2FA method is Google. Once you have enabled the 2FA feature and linked applications to your Google account, you must verify your identity before signing in anywhere. For instance, you would need to answer security questions, input an OTP sent to your Email ID or phone number, etc., to access your Google or Google-linked account.

Why You Should Use Two-Factor Authentication:

There are numerous reasons why you should use two-factor authentication. Here are two of the major ones:

  • It Protects Your Data – One of the most prominent features of 2FA is that it protects your data stored on any major platform. For instance, if you use Google Drive to store your data, it may get compromised in case of a cyber attack. However, if you use two-factor authentication to secure your account, no one else except you will be able to access your account since only you would be able to answer the security questions or provide the OTP sent your email address or phone number. 
  • It Helps You Save Money – Since online data breaches and cyber attacks have become so common now, most users use paid third-party software to enhance their data security. Hence, if you use the native 2FA method, you can save money that otherwise would have been spent purchasing a third-party security tool. 

Two-factor authentication is a powerful security system that prevents cybercriminals from conveniently hacking into users’ online accounts and stealing data. If you are confused about whether you should enable the 2FA method on your online account or not, refer to this article to make a sensible decision.

His love for reading is one of the many things that make him such a well-rounded individual. He's worked as both an freelancer and with Business Today before joining our team, but his addiction to self help books isn't something you can put into words - it just shows how much time he spends thinking about what kindles your soul!


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