How to set up two-factor authentication

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Aina Prat Blasi
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Two-factor authentication (also known as 2FA) is an extra layer of protection added to ensure that users attempting to log into an account are who they say they are. First, the password and username are entered. So instead of immediately gaining access to the account, you are prompted to provide another piece of information, such as a code.

You can get that code through text messages or by using a specialized authentication app you install on your mobile device. Once linked to your accounts, the app will generate a stream of random codes to use when needed. This method does not require an Internet connection to provide the code.

By activating this procedure you will get greater security that your social accounts are not compromised.

Set up two-factor authentication on Facebook

From computer

  • Go to Facebook and click the down arrow in the top right corner.
  • From there, select Settings and privacy> Quick links to privacy.
  • Scroll down until you reach the section Account security and click Use two-factor authentication.
  • Here you will be presented with two options. The recommended one is to use an authentication app to generate verification codes for added security. The second is text messages (SMS). This method uses text messages to send verification codes to your phone after logging into your Facebook account. If you want to select this option, click the button Use text message (SMS) and follow the steps.
  • To follow the recommended route, click the button Use authentication apps. A QR code will be generated on the display.
  • Open the authentication app, Google authenticator for example, and scan the QR code. An authentication code will now be generated by the app. It needs to be copied and pasted onto your Facebook desktop app.
  • That's all! Two-factor authentication is now active.

If you go back on the same path Settings and Privacy> Privacy Control> Account Security> Two-Factor Authentication, you will notice that you can now add a backup method so that you can log in even if your security method is not available. This includes text messages (SMS), security tokens, and recovery codes. It might be a good idea to set one of these in case you can't log into your account on a regular basis.

From mobile app

  • Open the Facebook app on your phone.
  • Tap the hamburger menu located at the top right and scroll down until you find Settings and privacy.
  • Tap it and select Quick Privacy Links.
  • Scroll down until you reach the section Account security and tap the function Use two-factor authentication.
  • After doing that, you will see the same two options we described above.

Set up two-factor authentication on Instagram

  • Open the app on your phone and go to your profile.
  • Tap the hamburger menu located in the top right corner.
  • Select Settings.
  • Click Security, then search and click Two-factor authentication.
  • Now tap the blue button Start that appears in the next window.
  • You have two options: text message and authentication app, the latter being the recommended method. Activate the option you prefer, then follow the steps described to activate the feature.

Set up two-factor authentication on Twitter

From computer

  • Go to the Twitter page and log in with your account.
  • Find the menu on the left side of the display and click Other.
  • So, choose Settings and privacy.
  • Find the Settings menu and select the option Security and account access, Then Safety.
  • Click on the option Two-factor authentication and choose your preferred method.
  • In Twitter, you have three options to choose from: text message, authentication app, or security token. A security token is a USB or NFC-based piece of hardware that connects to your computer or mobile device for authentication. To use this method, you must first activate one of the two previous options.

From mobile app

  • Open the Twitter app on your phone
  • Tap the hamburger menu in the top left corner.
  • Go up Settings and privacy> Accounts.
  • In Access and security, you should locate the option Safety. Tap it to access the function Two-factor authentication. From there activate whichever option suits you best.

Set up two-factor authentication on Whatsapp

  • Open the app on your mobile device.
  • Then tap on the three dot menu in the top right corner.
  • Select Settings> Accounts> Two-Step Verification.
  • Tap the button Enable and the app will ask you to enter a PIN to be used as verification. Optionally, it will also ask for an email address as a backup option in case you forget your PIN. We recommend that you do this to prevent any problems that may arise.

Set up two-factor authentication on Snapchat

  • Open the Snapchat app.
  • By tapping your profile icon in the top left corner.
  • So go on Settings (the gear icon) on the right.
  • Select Two-factor authentication. Snapchat calls the function Verify access.
  • Once enabled, you will need a verification code to access new devices.
  • Tap the green Continue button at the bottom to select whether you want to verify by SMS or the authentication app method.

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