I’m not sure about you, but hackers have really been trying to get into my Instagram account the last few days. Actually, scratch that. They’re trying to get into BOTH my blog and personal accounts. I’m annoyed by all the emails, but I’m not super concerned about my accounts actually being compromised. Why is that, you might ask? Well, I’ve had two-factor authentication (2FA) enabled on both for quite a while. Does that mean there’s no way for someone to access my account? No. It’s not 100% effective, but it’s pretty darn close. And it’s better than doing nothing at all. If you’ve not yet enabled 2FA on your Instagram account, this post is for you.
Have you received an email that looks like this? I’ve been receiving them daily — on both of my accounts — for the last few days. This, my friends, means someone is trying to get into your account. The email itself is legit, but unless you’ve requested a password reset, it’s very likely a sign someone is trying to access your account.
I’ve felt pretty comfortable deleting these emails because a) I still have access to my account — confirmed by opening the app and seeing I’m still logged in — and b) I have 2FA set up. If you don’t, I’d strongly suggest you take a few minutes and do it.
If you’re not familiar with two-factor authentication, you can read up on it here.
How do I set up 2FA on Instagram?
- My recommendation is to use an authenticator app instead of just SMS/texting codes. My app of choice is Google Authenticator (App Store | Google Play), but there are other options. My tutorial will show you how to add your account to Google Authenticator, but the other apps should work similarly. (Before I go any further — if you get a new phone, don’t forget to transfer your accounts BEFORE you get rid of the old phone.)
- If you don’t have Google Authenticator (or another authentication app) installed, I’d do that first and get your Authenticator account set up.
- Once you’ve done that, open the Instagram app and tap the menu in the top right corner. Select Settings » Security » Two-Factor Authentication and tap “Get Started” on the next screen.
- Choose Authentication App and on the next screen, you can select to allow Instagram to set it up automatically or “Set Up Another Way”. I choose the latter because I have multiple authentication apps on my phone (because of my job) and I want to make sure Instagram goes to Google Authenticator.
- If you choose “Set Up Another Way” you’ll be taken to a screen with a 32 digit key. Copy that key.
- Open up Google Authenticator. Tap the + in the bottom right corner. Select “Enter a setup key.” Paste your key in and give the account a name. *IMPORTANT* make sure the name is clear, especially if you have multiple Instagram accounts.
- Once it’s added, you’ll be given a 6 digit code. You can tap it to copy it.
- Open the Instagram app again and paste that code on the “Confirmation Code” screen.
- You should see a screen that says “Two-Factor Authentication is On”.
- If you want even more protection, set up the Text Message option as well.
- Don’t forget to save your backup codes somewhere safe in case you get locked out!
And voilá. Your account is more secure. 🎉
Have you enabled 2FA on your Instagram?
Any of your other social media accounts?