When it comes to data you want to secure, your email accounts are probably close to the top of the list. The average hacker would love a peek at your email history full of password resets, not to mention getting potential access to your bank accounts or other private information.  You can greatly increase the security of your Gmail account with 2-Step Authentication.

  1. Log into your Gmail account, click on your account icon in the upper right corner and click the My Account button.
  2. On the next web page that opens, click on the link “Signing in to Google”
  3. Click on 2-Step Verification to start the process.
  4. Click the Get Started button.
  5. Enter your Gmail Password.
  6. Enter your cell phone number, make sure Text Message is selected and click the Try It button.
  7. You should have received a text message with a 6 digit code.  Enter the code and click the Next button.
  8. If all went well, you will receive a message telling you that your cell phone authentication code worked, so you can now officially turn on 2-step authentication by clicking the Turn On button.
  9. [Optional]  As a backup, in the event that you don’t have your cell phone, you can add a second cell phone number of a significant other.
  10. [Optional]  As a backup, in the event that you don’t have your cell phone, you can download and/or print out (10) Backup Codes that can be used to authenticate your account.  Click the Set Up button.
  11. [Optional]  You will be presented your (10) codes, which you can print and/or download.  If you do this step, save these codes in a safe place that you will remember.