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How to Set up And Use Google Authenticator on Your Phone

Axel Nash

Written By Axel Nash |

Google Authenticator is an app for adding a more advanced layer of protection for online account sign-up using two-factor authentication (2FA).

What is an authenticator app on Android? When a user signs up for an account and provides their login and password, Google authenticator account details also require the user to provide additional information. Why and how to use google authenticator? Let us find out.

Part 1: What is Google Authenticator?

Google Authenticator is an application developed by Google Inc., and it supports adding two-step authentication to various account details. It is available for Android and iOS and works for many accounts, including Google, Amazon, Facebook, etc.

How to use Google authenticator?

Two-factor authentication allows you to make your accounts more secure so that there are fewer chances of any intruder making way and compromising your online identity. The added layer of authentication is applied using authentication factors. These are three categories to verify the user's identity: knowledge factors, ownership, and biometrics, as we discussed already.

Part 2: Why do I need it?

We see a great shift in working from physical environments to digital settings. So, security and privacy are becoming significant issues. If an intruder knows your password, your information and digital identity are at risk. Therefore, adding another layer and the password helps you guard against online fraud and theft.

So, why do we need google authenticator account details when a simple text message can add another layer of security? What will you do if you are protected by text message, but your phone is out of access? Yes, such things happen, and you need some solution; the answer to this problem is the Google authenticator app. It does not require your phone to generate the code, and you also do not have to reveal your phone number to any websites. It even works in airplane mode. I think we have made a pretty convincing case for Google Authenticator, so let us move on to how to set up google-authenticator?

Part 3: How to Install & Setup Google Authenticator?

Google authenticator is a pretty simple application that works on both Android and iOS, so we can discuss the installation and setup procedure separately to avoid any misunderstanding.

How to Setup Google Authenticator on Android

  • Step1: Download the application from the GooglePlay store and install it on your Android device.

download the application

  • Step2: Once the installation is complete, click on the "Begin" button to start.

click on the begin button to start

  • Step3: You can set up your Google Authenticator account details on your Google account. Otherwise, skip this step.

skip this step

  • Step4: Now, configure your Google authenticator account using any of the two ways. You can either scan the barcode or enter the key, and I find scanning easier as you open up your camera and scan the QR code. When it is recognized, your account is added.

configure your google authenticator account

How to Setup Google Authenticator on iOS

  • Step1: Download the Google authenticator application for iOS from the official AppStore.

download the google authenticator application

  • Step2: Start the installation and when it completes, click on the "Begin" button to start setting up your Google authenticator account details.
  • Step3: You can use two ways to set up, i.e., scanning the barcode or punching in the key. As I already said in the Android guide, I think the scanning method is more convenient. So, you open up your camera and scan the square QR code, and Voila! It is done.

Two ways to set up

Part 4: Three Useful Tips for Using 2FA Google Authenticator.

  • Tip1: To set up two-factor authentication for an account, launch the Google Authenticator app and click the "+" in the top right corner of the screen. Click the "Scan Barcode" link and scan the QR code on the next screen. The app will start generating a 6-digit code.
  • Tip2: Google Authenticator application can be used on one device; restoration of account is a lengthy and complex problem.
  • Tip3: Always recreate the linked accounts before deleting them from the Google Authenticator app from the old phone when you are changing the phone.

Part 5: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What Does Key Mean on Google Authenticator?

The key is the QR code or the 32-digit code on Google Authenticator account details. It is provided in the 2-factor authentication settings, which can either be scanned or manually entered into the Authenticator app.

2. What do I do if I lose my Google Authenticator?

As a precautionary method, it is important to keep a backup of your code, just like alternative disposable passwords. Also, associate more than one authentication method to your accounts. You can associate an app and a mobile number to generate codes that you can receive on an alternate phone. As an alternative, you can use a USB token and the app to still have that token in case of losing the phone.

Saving your Google Authenticator account details and data on Google Drive allows you to retrieve it in case of a lost or stolen phone.

3. How do I get the QR code for the Authenticator app?

While installing, the wizard shows you the QR code when selecting the scan option.

4. How do I transfer my Google Authenticator to a new phone?

Transferring your Google authenticator account details is a detailed process. For more information and a step-by-step tutorial, follow the article of How to Move Google Authenticator to a New Phone (or Multiple Phones).

5. What happens if I uninstall Google Authenticator?

Deleting the Google Authenticator application means you'll lose access to any service configured through this app. So, it is critical to follow the proper method of backing up and transferring the Google authenticator to a new phone, as discussed above.


The two-factor authenticator is an important step in keeping your digital identity, credentials, and login details secure for personal and financial accounts. Google authenticator account details allow you to configure and use 2F authentication easily for all types of accounts.

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Axel Nash

Axel Nash

staff Editor