Two-factor Authentication, should I use it?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by Solomani, Dec 21, 2016.

  1. Solomani macrumors 68030

    Solomani

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    Location:
    Alberto, Canado
    #1
    Hi all,

    Apple prompted me to use two-factor authentication, and I finally enabled it. I got a follow-up email confirming it, and it said that I had a limited time to easily turn it off.

    I figured, an extra measure of security wouldn't hurt. But then, I only have two Apple devices at any given time nowadays (my desktop iMac, and my iPhone). I'm afraid that if I ever lost my iPhone…. then what? If my iMac somehow needed to send me "Authentication Code" (for example doing a clean install on iMac upgrade) and I no longer have my iPhone… then am I locked out of my Apple ID for good?
     
  2. Phil A. Moderator

    Phil A.

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Location:
    Shropshire, UK
    #2
    I personally think all accounts should be protected with an additional layer of security (such as two factor) as passwords alone are proven time and time again to be too insecure.

    To answer your specific question, you can setup an emergency recovery phone number where a recovery code will be sent to if you have no devices to hand that can get a code - it doesn't have to be your personal iPhone (and is probably better off not being your phone due to the fact that if you lose it you lose 2 ways of authenticating): it can be any phone (including land line).

    If all that fails, there is a recovery process available but it takes a couple of days - see here: request account recovery to regain access to your account

    Ultimately, it's your decision to balance the risk of having your account broken into against the risk of losing your trusted devices and backup phone number and having to go through the inconvenience of account recovery
     
  3. Solomani thread starter macrumors 68030

    Solomani

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2012
    Location:
    Alberto, Canado
    #3
    Thanks for that response, Phil.

    Hmm, I wonder if an iPad (I might get one in the future) would qualify as an Authenticating Device? I'm not sure since the iPad is neither a phone, and although it can send/receive text, they are the iMessage texts rather than the standard telephony SMS?

    Edit: never mind, Apple's website says that iPad can be used as an Authenticating device!
     
  4. KALLT macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2008
    #4
    I do not see why not. It makes things a lot easier for you. You only have to activate it on each device once and will then be protected from phishing attempts or compromised passwords. The only real downside is that the protection of your devices is paramount. If someone gets to know your device password, then they will get control over your iCloud account as well. Just make sure that these device passwords are strong and you are good to go.
     
  5. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #5
    That is what did as a last resort way to recover. I entered my daughter's iPhone number in there thinking it I lose my iPhone and MacBook at the same time, I could always send a recovery code to her and have her call it in to me.
     

Share This Page