As our lives are getting increasingly dependent on web based services, they are getting prone to hackers (crackers). There is a recent case of a web based company which was virtually forced to shut down its operation after the hacker was able to gain access to its backend and servers.

A company winding up its operation after a cyber attack

While no one can guarantee 100% safety against a malicious hacker, there are some precautions you can take to protect yourself online. One of the most important among them is 2 Factor Authentication(2FA) and you need not be a geek to enable this. Had the above company been a little prudent and enabled 2FA, Iā€™m sure they would not have met with such a fate.

What is 2 Factor Authentication?

In simple words 2FA provides a 2nd layer of password on top of your regular password for a given web application. This second password is normally either SMS-ed to you at the time of login OR it is configured in an application which is stored on your mobile phone. Except a couple of cases ā€“ which involved Social Engineering ā€“ I have not really heard some one getting hacked after enabling 2FA.

9 Important Services

Here are some commonly used important services where you can enable 2FA. Check the documentation link for the step-by-step procedure.

  1. Google Services (Gmail, Drive, YouTube): Documentation. If you use Gmail for business purposes, take a backup of Gmail using Spanning backup service.
  2. Yahoo: Documentation
  3. Outlook: Documentation
  4. FaceBook: Documentation
  5. LinkedIn: Documentation
  6. Dropbox: Documentation
  7. Amazon S3: Documentation
  8. Apple: Documentation
  9. PayPal: Documentation (Only available for US based customers)

Also check a comprehensive list by twofactorauth which provides a category wise list of all services providing two factor authentication.

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