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Two-Factor Authtication – What is it and How do I use it?

Two-Factor Authentication – A Foreign Topic

I know for many people Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) is a very foreign topic. I am going to go through the process step-by-step. Before we discuss that, a better question to start with is “why 2FA?”

With so much of our lives happening on mobile devices and computers our online accounts have become a magnet for bad actors or criminals. Hacks, data breaches, and other forms of cybercrime are getting more common and advanced every day.

Since we are dealing with online Cryptocurrency accounts, we need to protect ourselves with the best security we can get. Today, that is Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) .

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) options - Authy or Google Authenticator

The first thing to do is download a 2FA application such as Authy or Google 2FA. This is a judgement call on your part. Keep in mind that Authy will allow you to back-up your security keys in the event you get locked out of your account.

It does not matter if you are using an Android based system or Mac for this. The first thing is to download and install the app on your mobile device.

Once you have installed it, you will need to configure the settings to have a passcode. You can set biometrics as well so it will need your thumbprint to open the app. This is what we have done here. As we have it set, you can use either the PIN or a thumbprint.

You can now set up the Two-Factor Authentication (2FA) for your accounts.  I am going to show you how to set up 2FA for a Crypto Exchange Account. All accounts that use 2FA, are basically the same for setup.

1. click here in the top right corner
2. click add account
3. scan QR code

The first thing we need to do is click here in the top right corner which will show a dropdown menu.

Then click on ‘Add Account’

You will get this screen, which will allow you to scan the QR code. It can be found in the site settings where you want to set up the 2FA

Now, you will need to log into your account – for this example we are going to use Coinbase.

If you do not have a Coinbase account and would like to open one, just click here with our affiliate account Sign-up with Coinbase.

Coinbase  Cryptocurrency Account Signup steps
1. Setup
2. Security
3. Enable Authentication for 2FA

Once you have logged in, go to your Settings. Then click here to access your security settings, and then click on Enable Authentication.

Now you will be presented with a screen with a QR code, and a Authenticator Secret Code. You will now use your mobile to scan the image on the website which will generate a code.

When the code is in focus and aligned with the app, it will capture the image.

Before you close the app, it is critical that you write down the Authenticator Secret code and put it some place safe, where only you will be able to access it.  Saving it offline is a best-practice.

Now you will need to verify the code is working properly, so when you see this page come up, you will need to go back to your mobile. Your app should give you a 6 digit code like this.  You will have a limited time to enter it before it expires.

If you do not enter it in time, you will get an error message that says that the code is incorrect, then you can try again.

Enter the 2FA code into the verification box then click verify

Enter the code in the spot requested, hen click Verify.

And that is all there is to using Two-Factor Authentication (2FA).

But I do want to caution you, if you do have to do a reset because of a lost or damaged mobile, as long as you keep the Secret Code and you are able to enter it on the website you will be fine.

If you do loose your mobile, and someone tries to use it to access your account, they will not be able to unless they know your pass code for the 2FA or the Secret Code to reset the Two-Factor Authentication on the site.

I hope you found this walkthrough useful and if you have problems with it in using it on your account with us, just let us know and we will be happy to assist.

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