150 million Google accounts will be safer by the end of the year with automatic two-step verification

7 months ago on August 01, 2023

2-Step Verification, or 2SV for short, is a Google account security method that requires access to a second step or device to successfully log in. That's why many of you reading this article probably already have to enter a code that comes via SMS, or press a button on your phone to confirm login on another device. For those who don't know, the idea is that the secondary method provides physical access to the phone so that there is no doubt that it is the phone that is being used to log in.

Google plans to automatically enroll 150 million Google accounts in 2SV by the end of 2021 to put you in a more secure position against hackers and social engineers. Chrome already offers strong passwords and even has a built-in password security checker tool that will show you which of your passwords have been compromised. Plus, if you use the same password for multiple sites, Google will give you a pat on the hand and suggest you diversify.

We know that many, many people take account security less seriously - not out of spite or intentionally, but simply because we were raised with bad habits (especially those who grew up in the 90s). Add to that the fact that passwords are an outright pain in the ass, and you have a recipe for millions of weak accounts that a company now has to contend with. On your behalf, it's trying to intervene to make the Internet a safer place.

On top of those 150 million accounts, Google will also require 2 million Youtube creators to enable two-step verification to protect their videos on the platform. Why these particular numbers? Because these people currently have the proper backup mechanisms in place, and the transition to 2SV will not be difficult. Going forward, Google has the challenge of incentivizing users who don't have backups to create them. Only after that will it be possible to migrate to them as well.

If you want to secure your account right now, you should go through Security Checkup. In fact, you should do it often! For more information on Google's efforts to protect over 10,000 at-risk users this year by giving them free security keys, as well as other login improvements they're working on, check out the Security Center. Now is the time to hear your feedback! Are you already using 2SV or do you find it an inconvenience?

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