Google Wants People to Use 2FA, So It’s Just Going to Turn it On

By | May 9, 2021
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Google wants people to use 2FA, so it’s just going to turn it on for them

Non-tech-savvy users always use the defaults, and the default will soon be 2FA.

Google to switch user to 2FA

Image from Google.

Enabling two-factor authentication (2FA) on a Google account requires someone who is proactive about account security. Users have to log in, dig through the settings, and tick the right boxes. Of the billions of Google accounts out there, the uptake on 2FA is probably not that high, and Google is tired of it.

Yesterday, for “World Password Day,” Google announced a very bold move for account security. “Soon,” the company says, it will start “automatically enrolling” users in 2FA, provided their accounts are appropriately configured. Google doesn’t go into detail about what “appropriately configured” means, but it sounds like anyone who can have 2FA enabled will have 2FA enabled soon. Google’s preferred 2FA method is the “Google Prompt,” a notification Google pushes to your phone when you’re attempting to sign in. Rather than requiring you to type in a clunky code, the Google Prompt provides a simple “yes/no” check, making 2FA easier than ever.

On Android, Google Prompt is a full-screen pop-up built into every device as part of Google Play Services, so that’s easy. On iOS, Google Prompt requests for your account can be received by the Google Search app, the Gmail app, or the dedicated Google Smart Lock app. It sounds like everyone meeting these requirements will soon be enrolled in 2FA.

Most users stick with the default settings, and soon, the default setting for 2FA will be automatic enrollment. Non-tech-savvy users are the most likely to have not enabled 2FA on their accounts, so hopefully, they’ll still be able to figure out how to log in when the process suddenly changes. Google could also potentially lock someone out of an account if the company automatically enrolls a user in 2FA and the user’s device setup can’t actually support it. Hopefully, the first attempt includes some kind of wiggle room or consent.

Source: Ars Technica

2 thoughts on “Google Wants People to Use 2FA, So It’s Just Going to Turn it On

  1. JonInOz

    Hi TC & Darcy,
    Google people placed their browser on the Internet for people to use, 2 part access will be necessary, not for me at home, and if I am in the local library and use a computer to log in to Google I will not mess around with 2 FA.

    Reply
  2. Peggy J Dorgan

    I am thinking about changing browsers because of Google’s blocking ads. That won’t help for this because I am a Gmail user. I just wish these guys would let me decide what I want to view for myself. I am a mature adult capable of making my own decisions.

    Reply

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