Google Offers Two-Factor Authentication

February 10th, 2011

I see this development as a sort of confidence trick, where Google is trying to get people to put more of their eggs into fewer baskets (that Google controls, of course).

Two-factor authentication schemes offer strong security against unauthorized account access by miscreants, no doubt about it, but never forget that Google is God on Google. It sees all. It knows all. Many people will make the mistake of thinking that the enhanced security protects their data from everyone, including the government. That’s not true at all. This does nothing to protect your information from Google itself and the national security interests it willingly serves.

So, if you use Google services, I would say to use this, but just keep in mind that Google has access to everything that you do on there, and that, if they turn over your data to any outside organization, there would be no indication of it, two factor login or not.

Via: Wired:

The net is getting a little safer for Google users Thursday, as the company unveils an option to lock down their accounts with more than just a password.

Starting Thursday all Google users can choose to turn on a so-called “two-factor authentication” feature, which will require them to type in a special, short-lived second password in addition to their normal password to get into their account. Users will be able to get the codes by text or a phone call, or use smart phone apps for Android, iPhone and Blackberry to generate the codes.

The idea isn’t new, even though this is the first time such a security option has been offered for free by a major online e-mail service.

Another Confidence Trick: SSL

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