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What is this buzz about 2-step verification, and do you need it?

Protecting your Gmail account from hackers is easier now, without your having to switch to an obscure, difficult to remember password. Why not add more protection to your account? It’s an easy call.

locks security google

locks security google

Gmail’s new security feature – easy as pie

Nearly every person has had their email account hacked or their password stolen. Your contacts get spam emails from your account and your personal information is at risk. Unfortunately, with all the technology we all use every day, this is just a part of modern life. But it no longer has to be, at least when it comes to your Gmail account. Welcome, 2-step verification.

Gmail’s new feature of a 2-step verification can be used by anyone with a Gmail account. The whole purpose is to secure and lockdown your email account against hackers or spammers. Before you can begin the verification process, however, you’ll have to access your account settings and link your phone to your account. After you’ve done so, you can then proceed to logging in.

How it works

The first step is to sign in as you usually do, with your username and password. Easy enough. The second step requires you to have a Google-sent verification numerical code and enter it when you’re prompted for it. The easiest way is to have your phone with you at the time. However, that isn’t always possible, if you’re traveling or your phone is lost or stolen. Fortunately, Google thought of that problem already. If you choose, you can receive a list of verification codes that you’ll have to print or write down in case you don’t have your phone readily available or if you’re traveling and you don’t have service. These codes can only be used once.

When you opt-in for the two-step verification, you have to include a back-up phone number in case yours is lost. It could be a landline—as you can choose for the verification code to be sent through voice message—or a trusted friend’s phone number. This is really to make sure that you have the appropriate access whenever you need it.

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Another option you have is to choose for Gmail to remember your verification code for thirty days. This is a great option if you access your Gmail on your phone or even on your iPod. While it will take an extra step to even access your email, it may be worth the few minutes added to your day. That extra step will be a little tedious, but it will ultimately keep your email and your personal information safe and private. And that might be worth the tedium of the 2-step verification.

Written By

The American Genius Staff Writer: Charlene Jimenez earned her Master's Degree in Arts and Culture with a Creative Writing concentration from the University of Denver after earning her Bachelor's Degree in English from Brigham Young University in Idaho. Jimenez's column is dedicated to business and technology tips, trends and best practices for entrepreneurs and small business professionals.

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