Protecting accounts and avoiding intruders is essential to avoid problems. It is something that we must do in any social network that we use, such as Facebook or Twitter, in email, forums where we are registered … In this article we are going to talk about the steps to activate double authentication based on Google Authenticator and protect the account from PayPal.
Why activate 2FA
To protect online accounts we must not only focus on the password. It is also important to take other measures and one of them is the authentication in two steps or 2FA. It basically consists of adding a second barrier. A second step to be able to enter an account.
For example, this second step is usually a code that we receive by SMS or email. When we log in, beyond the password, they will also ask us to put those digits that we have received and thus verify that we are really the legitimate user and it is not an account theft.
But in addition to these common 2FA methods, we can also use certain applications. One of them is Google Authenticator , which what it does is show us a unique code that we must put when we log in. This has an expiration date, so we prevent any intruder from stealing it and using it to enter the account.
It is very important to activate 2FA in PayPal since there may be different cases in which the password ends up in the wrong hands. For example, a leak on the servers of this online payment service. Also if we are victims of a Phishing attack or we have malware on the computer that steals the keys.
Steps to activate PayPal double authentication
To protect the PayPal account well, we can activate double authentication with Google Authenticator. You simply have to follow a series of steps that we are going to mention and in a short time we will have our account properly protected from possible intruders.
Login to PayPal
The first thing we have to do is log into our PayPal account. We can enter the official website from any browser and enter the access data, with the corresponding username and password.
Once inside, you have to go to Settings . It appears in the upper right, with an icon of a nut. This will take us to the main window to modify parameters such as language, time zone, email, the phone number that we are going to use linked to the account, etc.
One of those sections within Settings is the PayPal Security Center. We have to click there and it will show us a series of options. We will see a button to change the password, manage logins or add security questions. The one we are interested in is Two-Step Verification .
You have to click on Configure, which appears just to the right of this section. A dialog box will appear as we can see in the image below. We can select Receive a code by text message and Use an authentication application. What interests us is the second option to configure Google Authenticator in PayPal.
Link PayPal to a 2FA application
The next step will be to link a 2FA application with PayPal in order to activate two-step authentication. We will see a new window, where a QR code will appear that we will have to scan with the app. For example we can use Authy.
Later we will have to enter a six-digit code that we will receive in the two-step authentication application. This will allow us to verify the account and link it correctly to start using it from that moment on.
When we do this process, when logging in to PayPal we will have to verify the user with an application, in addition to having to enter the access code that we have always entered. We will therefore have an extra security barrier.
Tips to protect PayPal
But beyond activating two-step authentication in PayPal with Google Authenticator, we also want to give a series of recommendations to protect our account and avoid any type of intruders and security problems. We can apply this easily and serve as a complement.
Use good passwords
Something very important to protect PayPal correctly is to use good passwords . It is not enough to put any password, since this is precisely what could cause an intruder to enter our account. If, for example, we use a password that contains our name, surname or basic figures.
A good password is one that contains letters (both uppercase and lowercase), numbers, and any special symbols. It must be totally random and that we are not using it anywhere else. In addition, it should be changed periodically.
Always official apps
Of course, you always have to use official applications . It is true that sometimes we come across other programs that have additional functions, but we have no guarantees that they will really be reliable and we could be exposing our data.
Therefore, our advice is to download the official PayPal application from your website or secure application stores, such as Google Play. Likewise, when entering the web version we need to make sure that we are entering the real URL and we have not entered from a third-party link.
Have the system updated
To maintain general security and also benefit accounts like PayPal, we must have the equipment properly updated. We must always have the latest versions to correct any vulnerability that may appear and be exploited by an attacker.
An intruder could exploit a flaw in Windows, for example, to sneak in password-stealing malware. An example is the keyloggers, which are responsible for collecting everything we put on the keyboard and send it to a server controlled by the attacker.
We must also take into account the importance of using security applications. A good antivirus , such as Windows Defender, Avast or Bitdefender, will help maintain the necessary protection to prevent the entry of malware.
It does not matter what operating system we are using, since security problems can appear in all cases. Therefore, whether Windows, macOS, Android or whatever, we must bear in mind the importance of installing a good security program.
In short, following these steps that we have mentioned, we can configure two-step authentication in PayPal and use Google Authenticator to create that extra barrier of protection and prevent an intruder from accessing our account.