Turn It On: How to enable two-factor authentication for over 100 websites

Want to increase the security of your accounts but unsure where to start? Begin with the Turn It On campaign.
Written by Charlie Osborne, Contributing Writer

Telesign has launched a campaign to encourage more users to enable two-factor authentication security controls for their online accounts.

Launched this week, Turn It On is an online guide to securing your accounts with two-factor authentication (2FA). This additional layer of security is used to protect accounts even when hackers know your password.

For example, PayPal's 2FA layer requires you to connect your account to a mobile device which is then sent an additional, randomly generated code which must also be submitted to access the account.

The campaign features guides for over 100 websites including popular online banking, social networking and e-commerce websites. Guides for 2FA protocols used by Facebook, Gmail, Yahoo, Twitter and Facebook have already proven popular.

As threat actors involved and phishing campaigns increase in complexity, there is more risk than ever of falling prey to a scammer and handing over sensitive data -- or being infected with malware which logs your keystrokes. Therefore, it is important to make the general public understand basic security systems and how they can protect their accounts without the need to be a cybersecurity expert.

"The number one tip most experts give for increasing account security and stopping the fallout from data breaches is to turn on two-factor authentication," said Steve Jillings, CEO of TeleSign.

"Yet our research shows that the majority of consumers (61 percent) do not know what two-factor authentication is, even though it's available on almost every account, free to the consumer and just waiting to be turned on."

In addition to the launch of Turn It On, Telesign also released new research findings which claim 70 percent of consumers lack a high degree of confidence that their passwords can adequately protect their online accounts.

The research, dubbed the Consumer Account Security Report, also suggests the majority of online users are in search of "additional help" to keep their accounts secure.

According to the security firm, the survey -- which polled 2,000 consumers in the US and UK -- showed that "password fatigue" is rife, and 21 percent use passwords which are over 10 years old. Meanwhile, almost half -- 47 percent -- rely on passwords which are over five years old. In addition, 73 percent of online accounts use duplicate passwords -- which is the equivalent of handing over the keys to your digital kingdom if only one is obtained.

See also: What are the top 25 most common and easily hackable passwords? Is yours on the list?

You cannot do much to force the average consumer change their password in a timely fashion or use highly complex strings. Therefore, 2FA acts as a way to keep accounts secure even when passwords lack much substance as a security barrier.

Read on: In the world of security

Editorial standards