- Google is interested in you not being left unprotected and transferring Authenticator 2FA to another mobile
- This is one of the best and easiest ways to keep all your online accounts safe.
- What are the steps to bring 2FA authentication to a new iPhone or Android phone?
If you’ve taken the trouble to activate this security system, you probably think that bringing 2FA authentication to a new phone may seem like a complicated task. But following the correct steps, it is not difficult at all. In fact, there is more than one way to do it because Google is very interested in not leaving you unprotected. Let’s see what are the ways we have to transfer Google Authenticator 2FA to another mobile.
For those who are not so involved in the subject, we must remember that two-factor authentication (2FA) is one of the best and easiest ways to keep your accounts secure online. It works by issuing an authentication code to the smartphone when someone tries to access an account. If that person doesn’t have it, they basically can’t access the profile. That prevents a stranger from seizing it.
Before you could receive a code by text message, but it is considered much less secure given the rise of so-called SIM hacking. So it’s better to use a 2FA app, like Google Authenticator or Authy.
But, what happens when changing the terminal? how to keep 2FA?
In the case of the first of them, it establishes the 2FA system taking advantage of the scanning of a QR code generated by the app on a separate device or by entering a keycode. This is a relatively simple process. But there was a catch: what happened if you changed your terminal, if you lost it or it was stolen and you had to use another?
For a long time, since the method worked with a specific key for your phone, if you lost or broke your phone, you couldn’t just reinstall the app on the new device and go from there as usual. You had to transfer the keycode for that phone, as well as the app itself. That’s where the problems came from.
Fortunately, a few weeks ago Google updated its Authenticator app for Android and iOS, reaching versions 6.0 and 4.0 respectively), which should make this procedure a lot easier. The old methods of transferring two-factor authentication are no longer needed.
How to bring 2FA authentication to a new phone?
When updating the Authenticator version, if you have not already done so, you will see a welcome page It will ask you to log in with your credentials. Hit the blue Continue as (your name) button and you’re done. Assuming you prefer not to move to other devices, tap on Use Google Authenticator without an account.
Either way, you can undo this setting anytime you want.
Between two Android phones
If you have two Android phones, things will be easier, since the Authenticator app itself will create a QR code.
- Install Google Authenticator on your new phone
- Tap Get started and tap Scan a QR code
- You will see a grid and instructions to place the QR code inside the red lines
- Open Google Authenticator on your old phone
- Click on the three dots at the top right of the screen and select Transfer accounts
- Go to Export accounts and verify your identity through password, fingerprint, etc.
- Uncheck the accounts you don’t want to export and click Next
- A QR code will be displayed
- Center it in the grid of the new phone
- You should see the imported app listed in your Google Authenticator app
With backup codes
When you first set up Google Authenticator, it may provide you with backup codes. It will usually ask you to save or print them. It is better that you do it for situations like the one described.
If you are going from Android to iPhone instead of going from one Android to another, this is the shortest way.
In the event that you don’t have the codes handy, you can retrieve them and bring 2FA to your new iPhone.
- Sign in to your Google account, and click on Security in the left column
- Scroll down and select Two-Step Verification, entering your credentials
- Scroll down again to Backup Codes and click Show Codes
- You will receive a list of ten codes, and each of them can be used only once although you can ask for more
Taking a screenshot of the QR code
If you don’t have the aforementioned codes but do have a screen of the original QR barcode, the one you used to create your app authentication is more than enough to establish your credentials on the new phone.
All you have to do is locate the screenshot and scan it with the new device.
On the other hand, it is best that this screenshot is not available to strangers.
Have you been able to bring 2FA authentication to a new phone?