Google's two-step authentication goes worldwide

Google is rolling out the two-step authentication in 40 languages in 150 countries

Google said Thursday that it has rolled out its two-step authentication sign-in system to 40 languages across over 150 countries.

The service, which is intended to make it more difficult for hackers to break into Google accounts, has been available since February as an optional service but only in English.

The two-step verification system combines password-based authentication with a verification code. The code is generated by a Google app on the user's iPhone, Android or BlackBerry smartphone, or sent to the user by short message service (SMS) or automated voice call. The account can be accessed only after this code is entered. The verification code can be made valid for a session or for up to 30 days at a time.

The verification system was offered in September to users of Google Apps, and was introduced in English to Google accounts in February. There was no geographic limitation earlier, but Google now supports more countries for receiving codes via SMS and voice calls, for people who aren't using the Google Authenticator app on a smartphone, Google said in an e-mail.

The option to receive the codes through SMS and automated voice calls is likely to be useful to users in emerging markets like India where most mobile users do not have smartphones.

After the user sets up a phone to receive verification codes, 10 backup codes are issued. These backup codes can each be used once instead of a verification code to sign in, and could be useful when users don't have access to their phone, for example, while traveling, Google said. While setting up the preferences, users can also provide an alternative mobile number in case the first phone is not available or lost.

Email, social networking and other online accounts still get compromised today, but two-step verification cuts those risks significantly, said Nishit Shah, product manager for Google security.

Google has been promoting its two-step authentication after Gmail accounts were compromised in June. The company said that passwords of personal Gmail accounts of hundreds of users including senior U.S. government officials, Chinese political activists, officials in several Asian countries, military personnel, and journalists were collected in a campaign which seemed to originate from Jinan, China.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesGooglesecurityAccess control and authenticationinternet

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Ribeiro

IDG News Service

Most Popular Reviews

Follow Us

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Shopping.com

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Latest Jobs

Shopping.com

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?