How to: secure your account
CLOUD users the world over collectively gasped recently when hackers took over an American journalist’s Amazon, Google, Twitter and Apple accounts, deleting his email and wiping his iPhone, iPad and MacBook in the process.
This digital tragedy is turning into a learning experience, however, both for companies and users. Google, for example, offers a more secure way to safeguard Gmail, that you can apply to your account. SETTING IT UP Gmail users get several security options, with the safest two-factor authentication. Set it up and Google will send a PIN number to a nominated mobile phone number each time you log in to a new computer.
To add this security feature, log in to your Gmail account in a web browser. Click on your profile photo, select Account and Security. Beside Two-Step Verification, select Edit. In the next menu, you enter a phone number to receive text or voice messages.
You can also choose to ‘‘trust’’ certain computers, so you need to enter a verification code only every 30 days. SECURE OPTIONS If you don’t want to receive text messages from Google, or in case your phone is outside a coverage area, you can download a Google Authenticator app. The app is available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry-based phones and generates the codes required.
Alternatively, Google provides a list of authentication codes you can print and use once only. These can be used in case your phone disappears. Google also asks for an extra phone number as a backup. MISSING APPS Unfortunately, most apps and programs such as Outlook and Apple Mail can’t use this twostep process. Different passwords can be set for each of these programs to prevent a widespread break-in.