Passwords alone are no longer sufficient security for sensitive accounts, such as your bank or social media. You want to turn on two-factor authentication as well.
Two-factor authentication means a person has to authenticate their identity in two different ways before gaining access to an account. By enabling two-factor, you prevent hackers from breaking in if they’ve only gotten their hands on your username and password.
Traditionally, two-factor has involved a text message sent to your phone with a numeric code to input. If you know the code, that means you have your phone, so the app or site can trust that you’re really you.
But that method leaves you vulnerable if somebody gets their hands on your phone or tricks your cell provider. If you want some password hygiene extra credit, take a couple seconds to download an authenticator app. These connect to your accounts and ping you when somebody tries to log on. Then, the app gives you some second piece of info that authenticates your identity and lets you sign in. Google, Microsoft, Twilio and ID.me all make authenticator apps you can access from different mobile devices. Just type “authenticator” into an app store and download one of these options.