Sunday, February 13, 2011

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Updated: Jan 05, 2011

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Tony Burkhart

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How it works - Google - Why you should use 2-step verification NOW!

AccountsHelp articlesGetting started with 2-step verification › How it works  

Getting started with 2-step verification

Why you should use 2-step verification

2-step verification adds an extra layer of security to your Google Account by requiring you to have access to your phone – as well as your username and password – when you sign in. This means that if someone steals or guesses your password, the potential hijacker still can't sign in to your account because they don't have your phone.

How you sign in with 2-step verification

  1. When you want to access Google products from your browser, go to that product and enter your username and password.

    image of brain with arrow to sign in

  2. You'll next be prompted to enter your verification code, which you'll get from your phone. You'll only have to do this once every 30 days if you so choose.

    image of phone to verification screen

  3. Soon after you turn on 2-step verification, non-browser applications and devices that use your Google Account (such as Gmail on your phone or Outlook), will stop working. You'll then have to sign in using your username and a special password you generate for this application. (Don't worry, you'll only have to do this once for each device or application.)

    image of application-specific password to phone

What you’ll need

While 2-step verification requires some web savvy, you only need a few basic items:

  1. A phone that is usually available to you when you sign in. This could be:
    • A standard phone (landline or mobile)
    • Any Android device, BlackBerry device, iPhone, iPod Touch, or iPad that can run the Google Authenticator application
  2. A backup phone that you can use if you lose access to your primary phone. This could be:
    • A work or home phone (landline or mobile)
    • The phone of someone you trust, like a friend or family member.

How to get started

So you're ready to make your account more secure? The next step is to see if your account is eligible for 2-step verification yet. To do this, go to your Accounts settings page new window and look for the Using 2-step verification link. If you have the link, you can click it and start the setup process.

If you do not see the link:

  • 2-step verification might not be enabled for your account yet. Please be patient – all Google Accounts should be enabled soon.
  • If you are a Google Apps user, your domain administrator might not have enabled it for your domain. Check with your domain administrator to find out.
  • If you are a Google Apps user, you might have to access the 2-step verification setup through a special URL. new window

ManageAccount settings page

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Dinner at Mom n Dad's. Steak, potato, peas and broccoli mac n cheese

Eighth Circuit declares RAZR a computer under federal law

There's little doubt that today's smartphones are pocketable computers -- they're equally or more powerful than the desktop PCs of yesteryear -- but what about dumbphones? Well, in US v. Kramer, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals just held that a Motorola Motorazr V3 fits the federal statutory definition for a computer -- and quoted Woz in the opinion: "Everything has a computer in it nowadays." Seems a bit silly to call a RAZR a computer, but courts can only interpret existing laws, not make new ones -- and US law says a computer is "an electronic, magnetic, optical, electrochemical, or other high speed data processing device performing logical, arithmetic, or storage functions." Because this was the first time a federal appeals court had ruled on the issue, the Eighth Circuit set a precedent that other courts are likely to follow. And yes, the court is aware such a definition may include microwaves and coffee makers, and informed Congress that it should change the law if it doesn't like it. Regardless of whether you agree, this interpretation added some jail time for a guy who pled guilty to trying to engage in sexual activity with a minor, so the mild absurdity of it all is fine by us. Somewhere Chris Hansen is smiling.

Eighth Circuit declares RAZR a computer under federal law originally appeared on Engadget on Sat, 12 Feb 2011 21:14:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Tony Burkhart

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