When securing your online accounts, two-factor authentication (2FA) is an easy way to add another layer of security. There are numerous options available to download including the Google Authenticator app.

Effectively, the Google Authenticator app generates time-based one-time codes that are linked to sites or accounts. A small timer indicates just how long you have left to enter the key before it expires, or a new code will generate. This prevents theft of one multiple-use key and is likely more than enough for many people out there looking to add an extra layer of security beyond just your password for your online accounts.

The initial setup process relies on a QR code or simple key, and while your Google account is now secured by your phone by default, for managing more than one service Google Authenticator is still a great free option despite the manual setup process.

google authenticator downloads

As spotted by Android Police, the Google Authenticator app has now surpassed the 100 million download barrier over on the Play Store. One minor annoyance is that you need to transfer or export any accounts to a new device when you switch. However, should you lose your phone or it breaks, then unfortunately, you need to ensure that you have synced across devices.

That said, it’s a simple app that offers very little beyond a dark theme but it is capable of generating secure codes even without a mobile or data connection. As such, updates have been few and far between and the feature-set is quite limited.

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Damien Wilde

Damien is a UK-based video producer for 9to5Google. Find him on Twitter: @iamdamienwilde. Email: damien@9to5mac.com

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