A Google engineer recently revealed how many Google account holders currently use two-factor authentication for added security. The results may or may not be surprising to you, but they’re certainly disheartening.
Google software engineer Grzegorz Milka said that fewer than 10 percent of active Google accounts are using two-factor authentication. Milka gave the number during a presentation at Usenix’s Enigma 2018 security conference in California, according to The Register.
Milka also cited a study noting that only 12 percent of Americans use a password manager to help them protect their accounts.
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The Register asked Milka why Google doesn’t just make the increased security feature mandatory, and it appears most users would just rather not make the effort. “The answer is usability,” Milka said. “It’s about how many people would we drive out if we force them to use additional security.”
Despite attempts to make the process easier, some users are still having issues with seemingly basic requirements. The Register claims that “more than 10 percent” of users trying to activate two-factor authentication “had problems just inputting an access code sent via SMS.”
Take The Steps
If a site offers what it calls two-step verification or two-factor authentication — they are likely referring to the same general process, but there is a distinction — you should strongly consider taking the steps necessary to activate the offered feature.
For instance, Facebook offers two-factor authentication, and it gives users a number of options for adding an extra layer of security. Gmail, meanwhile, offers two-step verification, but Google seems to refer to two-step and two-factor interchangeably in this case.
For more information on how to add an extra layer of security to these and your accounts for a few more popular websites, check out our article Do The Two-Step: Add Two-Step Authentication To These Accounts.
H/T The Verge