Once enabled, Google two factor authentication is really great and when combined with Googles Free Authenticator Mobile App, it’s even better. Let’s review how to install and use it.
Last week I reintroduced how to enable two-factor authentication for your Google account. For those of you who took my advice and enabled the 2-step verification feature (I really hope everyone followed this advice) I congratulate you! Now for step two, let me introduce the Google Authenticator Mobile Application.
Now, one negative side effect of the 2-step verification service from Google is each time you log in, Google will send you a text message with the 6 digit code. Now if you’re like me and don’t have an unlimited text message mobile plan, this has the potential to eat into your checkbook. The solution – The Google Authenticator App.
How to enable the Google Authenticator App for your Google Accounts
Remember, if you’ve not enabled 2-step verification on your Google account yet, stop here and do that before continuing. Also, enabling the Google Authenticator app for Google Apps accounts is identical to the steps below however before you can run through it, you will need to have your system administrator enable 2-step verification for your Google Apps domain.
Once downloaded, login to your Gmail account and click your username at the top. This will open a context menu. Click Account under your name.
Under 2-step verification, Click Edit.
Under Mobile Application, Click Android – iPhone – BlackBerry link.
At this point, the 2-step verification screen will appear with QR Barcode that looks like the following.
At this point launch the Google Authenticator app on your mobile phone (I’m using an iPhone) to scan the QR Barcode.
Tap the + sign to add a new account.
Tap Scan Barcode.
The camera will now open. Just point it towards the screen with the waiting QR barcode and your Phone will recognize it automatically.
The new account and the code will now be listed.
Type it into the code box on the Google page and click Verify. If everything is groovy, you will get a green check box. All done!
Once you click Save
Your new mobile phone will be listed on the 2-step verification page.
From this point forward, anytime you log in with this account, Google will no longer send you a text message. Simply open your Google Authenticator App and enter the six-digit code shown for that account.