The two-step verification is essential to impose security services used on the Internet. However, activating the feature by SMS, to receive the codes, is no longer a safe option, considering the SIM swap scams that have occurred and other ways of intercepting the text message. In this context, the best choice is to set the two-step verification with an app of tokens (2FA codes).
What are apps for managing 2FA codes
These applications are responsible for storing all of your two-step verification codes for the services that enabled the feature. Instead of receiving the codes via SMS, to access a website or application, the user must check them in the application.
How to configure the application?
After the initial steps, to connect or create an account if applicable, just look for the option to add a service and scan the QR code that will appear when starting the configuration of the 2-step scan.
What if I lose my phone?
Well, all services must provide the backup codes, used if the user does not have access to the cell phone for verification. They should be saved in a safe place and, preferably, other than the cell phone.
In addition, some applications offer backup in the cloud, which means that, even if they lose their cell phone, the user can access the account of this app through another device to redeem the codes.
All applications below have versions for Android and iOS.
1. Google Authenticator
Perhaps it is the best known among applications in the category. The only problem with Google Authenticator is that it has no backup in the cloud. So, in case the user loses his cell phone, it will be necessary to reconfigure all registered sites and applications.
2. Microsoft Authenticator
Microsoft’s solution also allows the application to be used for third-party, non-company services. Microsoft Authenticator has cloud backup, allows restoration in case of loss or replacement of the device.
Authy is one of the best free in the category and allows synchronization with more than one device at the same time. Thus, the codes can be accessed by the device that is closest – if it is on the computer and away from the cell phone, for example.
4. LastPass Authenticator
LastPass has a solution for managing two-step verification tokens, but it is also an application for storing passwords. It works like 1Password, it becomes responsible for storing everything, while you only need to remember the password to access the platform. It’s free, but online backup requires a subscription.
1Password is not an application that has 2FA code management as its primary function. It is a password manager, all your logins and credentials can be safely saved in it. However, one of the functions is to save the authentication codes in two steps. It’s paid, but if you already use 1Password or are looking for one that integrates these functions, like LastPass, it’s an option.