Setting up Google Authenticator is as easy as scanning a QR code

A couple weeks ago I posted the steps to enable Google’s 2-Step Verification for any of your Gmail accounts. This allows us that fuzzy feeling of knowing that even if someone did get hold of our password, they still can’t get your account. The only problem is that in order to log in, we must be able to receive a text or phone call.  With the Authenticator app, Google aims to make our lives a little easier by enabling our smart devices to generate the security codes. Today, I aim to show you how simple it is to set up the Authenticator app on your mobile device.

Prerequisites

There are a few things that must happen before you can continue with this setup.

  1. You must have 2-Step Verification set up for your Google account. If you have not completed this yet please click here and follow the tutorial.
  2. You must install the Google Authenticator app on you mobile device. This install is as simple as downloading the app from Google Play.
  3. You must install a barcode scanner. (if you do not have one installed, Authenticator will ask you to install one)

Setup

Now that you have completed the prerequisites lets jump right in and set up your device to be your mobile authenticator.

  1. From your favorite browser, open the Google account security page
  2. Click on “2-Step Verification”
  3. Under the Authenticator App section, click “Setup”
  4. Choose your device type (Android, iPhone) and click “Next” to reveal a QR code
  5. Open the Authenticator app on your device
  6. Tap on “BEGIN SETUP”
  7. Tap “Scan a barcode” (if you have not installed a barcode scanner, you will now be asked to)
  8. Scan the QR code that is open in your browser
  9. Click the “Next” button
  10. Type the code you see on your mobile device into the text box and click verify.
  11. Click the Done option to complete your setup

Gallery

There you have it, you now have the added security of a 2-step login process with the ease of a code generator on your mobile device.

A few things to note:

  1. You are only allowed to set up one device at a time as an authenticator,
  2. Make sure to never set this up on a publicly shared device,
  3. I recommend adding a password to your device if you set up this feature, remember that security is only as good as the person keeping it.

Now that you have this setup, tell us what you think. How are you using this in your daily life? What other security measures do you take? Hit us up in the comments to share the knowledge.